What You Need To Know About The USDA APHIS De Minimis


By Pacific Customs Brokers, Pacific Customs Brokers 2018-07-06

Public Comment on Lacey Act Exception

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is seeking public comment on a proposed exception to the Lacey Act import declaration for goods containing minimal or de minimis amounts of plant materials.

The Lacey Act

The Lacey Act requires importers to prepare an import declaration for certain plants and plant products.

The declaration requires;

  • Reporting of the scientific name of the plant,
  • Value of the import,
  • Quantity of the plant material, and
  • The name and country where the plant was harvested.

The Lacey Act does not address whether declaration requirements are necessary for otherwise non-plant products that contain a minimal amount of plant material, such as wooden buttons on a t-shirt.

Options for a De Minimis Exception

In an attempt to address this, APHIS is inviting public comments on two options for a de minimis exception to the declaration requirement.

Option #1

Adopt an exception for products containing plant material that is no more than 5% of the total weight of the individual product unit, provided that the total weight of plant material does not exceed 2.9kg (6.93 pounds).

Option #2

Adopt an exception for products containing plant material that constitutes no more than 5% of the total weight of the individual product, provided the total weight does not exceed a designated amount of plant material by weight or board feet.

Have Your Voice Heard

Beginning July 9, 2018, members of the public will be able to submit comments at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2013-0055


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