Effective April 1, 2018, USDA’s Animal and Plant (APHIS) will require retail facilities and airline catering services operating in or serving U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) passenger preclearance locations to comply with the requirements described below. These requirements are necessary to prevent the spread of potentially harmful plant pests and animal diseases from foods and agricultural products available to passengers in preclearance areas.
The following foods may be served without restriction in preclearance sterile areas and on flights with precleared passengers:
APHIS must approve the following foods prior to use in preclearance sterile areas or on flights with precleared passengers:
No living plants, plant parts for growing (such as seeds, stems, bulbs, tubers, etc.), cut flowers, cut foliage, or ornamental plant parts (such as fronds, fruit pods, leaves, or seed heads), may be sold in sterile areas or used in airline catering.
Service providers should refer to APHIS’ Fruits and Vegetables Import Requirements (FAVIR) database to find sources for whole fruits and vegetables for use in their menus and for sale. See Frequently Asked Questions: USDA APHIS Requirements for Passenger Preclearance Locations for more information.
All garbage onboard flights with precleared passengers is regulated under the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (Title 7 §330.400 -330.403 and Title 9 §94.5 and must be handled by approved entities per established requirements and policies upon arrival in the United States. Canada-origin garbage is exempt from this requirement. See the APHIS Regulated Garbage website for details.
CBP Agriculture Specialists at each preclearance location will inspect and monitor retail facilities in sterile areas and airline catering kitchens that service flights carrying precleared passengers to ensure compliance.
APHIS may change requirements and exemptions for agricultural products used in sterile areas and airline catering when there are disease status changes in the countries where preclearance locations operate or from which meat products are sourced. New requirements and exemptions will take into consideration:
APHIS will notify food service providers and airline catering kitchens when changes are made. Food service providers and airline caterers will have 6 months to make necessary menu changes.
To receive emails about this policy, subscribe to APHIS’ Stakeholder Registry and select the “News and Information” topic under Plant Health Information.