APHIS Announces Implementation Plan For Declaration Requirements on Importation of Plants and Plant Products

Kelley Drye Client Advisory

On October 8th, 2008, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced its plan to implement and enforce the new requirements to the Lacey Act which was passed in May of 2008.

The guidelines affect industries that primarily ship lumber, wood pulp, or paper. The scope of the declaration requirements, however, will also affect any industry that uses any amount of material derived from plants—products like furniture, resin, chewing gum, cigarettes, boats, wine with corks, cars, musical instruments, textiles, pharmaceuticals, and virtually anything that uses a label in shipping.

Additionally, companies that violate the Lacey Act may be subject to civil penalties up to $10,000 per violation or criminal sanctions of up to $20,000 in fines and/or up to five years imprisonment.