The United States is the world's leading wheat exporter, accounting for one-third of world wheat exports with U.S. exports in fiscal year 2004 valued at $6.6 billion. Wheat is regulated to prevent the entry of two harmful pathogens--flag smut (Urocystis tritici) and Karnal bunt (Tilletia indica), and fever ticks. In 1996 Karnal Bunt was found in parts of Arizona and California. The United States spent over 78 million to get rid of Karnal Bunt. It is paramount to keep the United States free from these devastating wheat pests.
Dried wheat stalks or wheat stems from which the seed has been threshed, is admissible only from Canada, New Zealand, and Norway (countries free from fever ticks, flag smut and/or Karnal bunt). Nevertheless, wheat straw or hay from these three countries still must be inspected by an agriculture inspector at the port of entry to check for the presence of plant pest and diseases. For more information on wheat and wheat straw, please contact USDA APHIS' Permit Unit.
From countries other than Canada, New Zealand, and Norway (countries having fever ticks, flag smut and/or Karnal bunt), wheat straw incorporated into manufactured and crafted articles may be admissible under specified conditions (conditions of processing or for indoor use).