There has been a large increase in the volume of prohibited food items, such as raw eggs and raw poultry meat, brought by travelers from Mexico.U.S. Customs and Border Protection director of field operations in San Diego, CA, Jennifer De La O, said in a press release on Friday.
Big Picture: Egg prices increased nearly 60% from December 2021 – December 2022 due to the avian (bird) flu and increased labor and fuel costs. As a result, U.S. CBP officials have reported a noticeable increase in people attempting to bring eggs from Mexico into the U.S. In Juárez, Mexico, a 30-count carton of eggs reportedly goes for around $3.40; meanwhile, a dozen eggs could sell for as much as $7.37 in California.
- CPB spokesperson Gerrelaine Alcordo explained, “Generally, the items are being declared during the primary inspection and when that happens the person can abandon the product without consequence. There have been a very small number of cases in the last weeks or so” in which eggs were not declared, but then discovered during an inspection. In this case, travelers are fined $300. However, “Penalties can be higher for repeat offenders or commercial size imports,” Alcordo told CNN.
- A customs official in San Diego tweeted this reminder: “… uncooked eggs are prohibited entry from Mexico into the U.S. Failure to declare agriculture items can result in penalties of up to $10,000.”
U.S. Customs and Border Protection Reminds Travelers Certain Agricultural Items are Prohibited in the U.S. (U.S. Customs and Border Protection)
by Jenna Lee,