New Mexico Department of Agriculture warns residents not to plant unsolicited foreign seeds

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The New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) has received reports of New Mexico residents who have been mailed unsolicited foreign seeds not clearly labeled as seeds. The seed shipments may be obscured as jewelry items.

If you are the recipient of one of these seed packets, the New Mexico Department of Agriculture is asking you not to plant them. If the seed has been planted, collect the seed prior to germination or destroy any emerging plants.

NMDA is working closely with the United States Department of Agriculture, Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection, other federal agencies, and other State departments of agriculture to investigate the situation.

This type of international shipment of seeds is unlawful under state and federal regulations. The seeds are unknown and could be a pathway for introductions of new invasive plant species and new plant diseases to the state.

NMDA asks anyone who has received one of these unsolicited foreign shipments to save all shipping labels, packaging and seeds, and contact the New Mexico Department of Agriculture by email at (photographs encouraged), or by phone at 575-646-3007.  Do not plant seeds from unknown origins.

New Mexico residents are not in violation of any regulations if they have received these shipments, but they are the key to identifying and stopping future shipments.

Send seeds and associated shipping materials to NMDA by mail at the following address:

New Mexico Department of Agriculture
Laboratory Division
Attn: Tim Darden
MSC 3 LD / P.O. Box 30005
3190 S. Espina Street
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8005


Find us at:
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @NMDeptAg
YouTube: NMDeptAg
LinkedIn: New Mexico Department of Agriculture

Photo source: Fox News

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