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Agricultural Inspection

The US Dept. of Agriculture says, “American agriculture is under constant threat of attack from countless enemies. These enemies are often microscopic and include plant pests and disease.”

To prevent the unknowing transmission of these hitchhikers, all passenger baggage moving from Hawaii to the US mainland is subject to pre-departure inspection at the airport. They ask that you be prepared to open and close your own bags. All agricultural items being mailed must be inspected prior to being taken to the post office.

You must notify the inspector if you have any agricultural items with you. Purchasing items from nurseries and fruit sellers that are qualified to certify them for you take the worry out of the process. They will package and stamp anything you wish to take that is on the “Permitted” list. Nothing makes everyone back home as happy as fresh Hawaiian fruit, or lovely orchids and tropical flowers.

Agricultural items PERMITTED into the mainland after passing inspection:
– Beach Sand
– Coconuts
– Cooked foods
– Dried seeds
– Dried decorative arrangements
– Fresh flowers (except gardenia, jade vine, and mauna loa)
– “Irish” or white potatoes
– Pineapples
– Plants and cuttings must be certified to be free of pests by the HI Dept. of Agriculture
– Seashells (except land snail shells)
– Papayas require treatments before shipment to the mainland.
– Commercially canned and throughly cooked foods are permitted.

Agricultural items NOT PERMITTED into the Mainland:
– Berries (including coffee berries and sea grapes)
– Cactus plants or parts
– Cotton and cotton bolls
– Fresh flowers of gardenia, jade vine, and mauna loa
– Kikania and pandanus
– Live insects and snails
– Plants in soil
– Seeds with pulp and fresh seed pods
– Soil
– Sugarcane
– Swamp cabbage (unchoy)
– Sweet potato (raw)

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