Seed imports to Oz

Myke Ashley-Cooper
Thu, 25 Jan 2007 06:07:44 PST
Here in South Africa, our postal authorities are too stupid or lazy to open parcels and seed arrives regularly without any hassle. However . . . . we are selling up to emigrate to Tallahassee and I'm thinking that the extra spare seed I have will merely be packed into the 40 foot container and won't be found! Maybe you can advise me how to do it legally as the seed originates in most cases from the PBS or other American suppliers. If I bring South African bulbs, that's another story, I guess?

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Bill Richardson 
  To: Pacific Bulb Society 
  Sent: Wednesday, January 24, 2007 5:49 AM
  Subject: Re: [pbs] Seed imports to Oz

  Hi Lee,
  no, in Australia there are no such restrictions.
  I get seed from all over the world nearly every month and they are all sent
  on with no hassle.
  Often,  the parcels been opened and checked, and sent on (no fee) with two
  stickers 1. is "Opened for inspection" and 2. is  "passed by quarantine". I
   have only twice had anything taken out of a parcel (not my fault either
  time) but the rest of the parcel was re-packed and forwarded on.
  I think we have the best system in the world here in Oz, at present.
  I winder how long it will last?
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: "Lee Poulsen" <>
  To: "PBS Society" <>
  Sent: Wednesday, January 24, 2007 12:03 PM
  Subject: [pbs] Seed imports to U.S.

  > I just a phone call from USDA/APHIS down the street from the L.A.
  > Airport informing me that a package of seeds had arrived from Rachel
  > Saunders in South Africa, and that I could either take time off from
  > work to fight traffic and drive over there and pick it up in person. Or
  > I could open an account with Federal Express and then give them my
  > account number that they could charge to and they could ship it across
  > town via FedEx. Or I could mail them actual postage stamps of
  > sufficient value ($1.35) for the weight of the package to have the US
  > Postal Service deliver it to my home. The guy I spoke with says he has
  > called several superiors of his several times since this new method was
  > begun seeking instruction on what exactly to do. He also acknowledged
  > that the USDA and the USPS are having an argument over whether the USPS
  > has to continue shipment or if they can charge full postage rates
  > depending on what the final destination that the package was addressed
  > to is. (The permit says the shipper should not put our address on the
  > outside of the package, but when the Archibalds put both the green and
  > yellow label and my address on the outside of the package it was
  > delivered all the way to my house. I couldn't tell if USDA/APHIS had
  > opened it for inspection or not.)
  > What this guy did say was that I could not send them money in any form
  > nor could they take a credit card number. I talked over various crazy
  > ideas with their dispatcher and she said that the program was so new
  > they hadn't really thought up any long term plans or solutions. I asked
  > her about sending her a supply of postage stamps that she could save
  > and use until they were all used up. She thought she could probably
  > keep them in a file for all packages I received and notify me when the
  > supply was gone. She suggested the idea that I send the postage stamps
  > along with the copy of my permit and the green and yellow label to the
  > overseas sender and then that person could include the postage stamps
  > inside the package together with the seeds. This of course would
  > require that I know how much the package was going to weigh beforehand,
  > or at least have an estimate of it.
  > In any case, it is an added complication that I wish they had figured
  > out back when they were figuring out this new method of seed importing.
  > Question: In Australia, after they've checked over your incoming seed,
  > do you have to go pick them up at the inspection station? Or are you
  > required to send them or provide them with the means or money to ship
  > them from the station to your home? Or do they just put them back in
  > the mail and your postal service delivers them to the final destination
  > without any additional charges? It would be somewhat ironic if they
  > don't charge you for that service since they do charge you for just
  > about everything else including many services that we in the U.S. don't
  > have to pay for, and yet here in the U.S. they do want to charge
  > additional for delivering the seeds the final leg of their journey. (I
  > also found out that if I need to get a phytosanitary certificate to
  > mail plants overseas, for about US$40 total the inspector will drive
  > over to my house, inspect all the plants I want to send, make out the
  > certificate, and give it to me. I believe that is cheaper than what the
  > Australians have to pay.) Anyway, just wondering.
  > --Lee Poulsen
  > Pasadena, California, USDA Zone 10a
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