More info than you probably need about importing into the USA

William Aley
Sat, 22 Jan 2011 17:36:19 PST
>> About the import permits,
>> Under the previous administration we were handed this process. It  
>> seems like the system is a government mess, designed under the  
>> rules imposed as the result of 911, it's a system that allows US  
>> residents and citizens to conduct computer peer to peer  
>> communication. It is also designed by civilians under contract to  
>> the government and is not owned by the government. In an effort to  
>> spread tax payer dollars back to the civilians, who are in the  
>> business of making money. That's the system we got and at this  
>> point in time it's what we have to work with.
>> 1. Permits are required for small lots of seed permit and the  
>> general "Q-37" permit. All shipments are required to have a  
>> Phytosanitary certificate, but not required for the small lots of  
>> seed permit.
>> Links that may be helpful
>> ePermits. Designed to be helpful once you get over that annoying  
>> verification process. one trick is to click on the map to see  
>> validation sites near you, call to make sure they are open,.  
>> because of government cut backs some services are limited because  
>> of staffing shortages and funding.
>> USDA did not invent it nor was it APHIS idea, it was a system  
>> designed and implemented  by an elected official using private  
>> civilian contractors. USDA does not own nor can we change the  
>> system without paying more money to the civilians who are awarded  
>> the contract. < 
>> learn_epermits.shtml>…
>> Mail/fax can still be used, it will take longer to get a permit   
>> because the paper submission is typed into the electronic system  
>> by  a college student  to get to the application to the right  
>> permit specialists. The more submissions received, the longer it  
>> takes them to get through the in-box. First in first out policy no  
>> expedited permits are done even when you have a brother who is an  
>> elected official. Its all FOIA documentation.
>> No APHIS cannot hire more people to process permits because there  
>> is a hiring freeze in place, and  only one person is hired for  
>> every two that leave. We are in the age of smaller government.
>> Typing in the permit  with epermits yourself means it will go  
>> directly to the permit writer. Thus saving time and possible  
>> errors. Picture an 18 year old college student at minimum wage  
>> processing your application. What level of quality control would  
>> you expect?
>> If you apply for a permit know the regulations that you are  
>> applying for.
>> 7 CFR319.37 is the regulation to be aware of. Just like getting a  
>> driver's license there are reasons why the permit is required. The  
>> rules were in place before anyone on this chat group were born and  
>> probably many of your grandparents too. Unless of course  they are  
>> 145 years old, then I apologize.
>> The 587 is the general import permit that most people will need,  
>> CITES is another level of import requirements, it's a trade  
>> regulation put in place by the "exporting" country, the importing  
>> country monitors and when things go wrong have to offer the plants  
>> back to the country of origin.
>> links to permits: <… 
>> >…
>> Remember that these are free permits. Not so in all countries. The  
>> cost for issuing and monitoring is paid by all taxpayers,
>> The Phytosanitary certificate is part of the international  
>> agreements. Shipments can be rejected for lack of this document.
>> PPQ established the small lots of seed permit to help out small  
>> business, seed collectors and folks who found it difficult to  
>> obtain (cost is prohibitive in some countries) A US Phytosanitary  
>> certificate is about 50$ to obtain for US origin exports.
>> <… 
>> >…
>> this may be a good option for you if you do seed exchange into the  
>> USA, there are restrictions and every shipment must clear through a  
>> Plant Inspection Station. IT is only for seed that have no special  
>> restrictions. Know the import requirements first be fore you  
>> request or pay for a shipment.
>> There is useful information under the circulars <… 
>> >…
>> for bulbs, seed and plants
>> Bulbs that are precleared is an option from the exporting country,  
>> the inspection is the same overseas as if done in the USA. The  
>> foreign exporter pays for this service to have a US inspection and  
>> inspector in a foreign country,  thus not all bulbs are precleared.
>> Just a personal note after being on this chat group for four years  
>> now.
>> Please understand that every year I check in and as a result  I get  
>> the usual comments about my lineage and how much of a plant nazi I  
>> am and a few other comments. I realize that this is often  
>> individuals not this group. Which I find generally have a keen  
>> interest in plants.
>> Please disregard this if you choose, I know I'm long winded and I  
>> never seem to make this simple, but regulations are complex and  
>> don't always make common sense, changing the federal regulations is  
>> a glacial process. My participation in this group is not  
>> entrapment, nor am I being a sneaky sleaze, in all honesty I can  
>> care less if you want to smuggle or think the government is out to  
>> get you personally, just be smart enough to realize that this is a  
>> public forum as part of the web. If you bring in dirty plants or an  
>> invasive plant it'll be your backyard that is ground zero. I hope  
>> your not my neighbor.  Very few chat groups have the senior import  
>> specialist  for plants for planting on their site, trust me I do  
>> grow plants and I have a valid import permit just like anyone else.  
>> If you have specific details I'll be glad to discuss off line.
>> Bill

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