Harmful grass fly larvae found in shipment to International Falls

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials safeguarded the shipment until the threat could be mitigated.
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U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials found harmful fly larvae in a shipment to Minnesota as part of 171 emergency notifications it issued in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Emergency notifications are meant to prevent plant pests, prohibited plant products and animal products capable of introducing foreign disease from entering the country.

According to a Tuesday announcement, Customers and Border Protection Agriculture Specialists found grass fly larvae in a shipment of potted plants from China in International Falls. The grass fly feeds on secretions around the eyes and nose of animals and humans and can cause bacterial infections.

The shipment was safeguarded until the threat could be mitigated.

Last quarter, Customers and Border Protection also found protected plants including ginseng and dendrobium manifested as tea in a shipment to Pembina, North Dakota.

The shipment lacked the proper documentation to enter and was sent back to Canada.

“These agriculture seizures show the significant priority Customs and Border Protection places on our agriculture inspection program at our ports of entry,” said Pembina area port director Jason Schmelz in a statement.

“Preventing harm to domestic crops and vegetation is an important role our Agriculture Specialists provide this country.” 

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