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Travelers Crossing a Land Border into the United States with Fruits and Vegetables from Canada

The United States restricts or prohibits the entry of many agricultural products, which can carry foreign pests and diseases that harm American agriculture and our environment.  A major pest or disease outbreak could mean higher grocery bills, shortages of certain foods, and devastating losses for our farmers and ranchers.  Help us keep American agriculture healthy by following the guidance on this page about products you may want to bring into the United States.

Travelers entering the United States must declare all agricultural products on their U.S. Customs forms. U.S. agricultural inspectors will examine your items to be sure they meet entry requirements and do not harbor harmful foreign pests or diseases.  U.S. inspectors have the authority to make a final determination about whether your products can enter the country.  We recommend that you keep receipts and original packaging of agricultural products as proof of their country of origin. 

As long as you declare all the agricultural products you are bringing with you, you will not face any penalties—even if an inspector determines that they cannot enter the country.

Scroll down for more information on how to declare items at Customs.

The guidance below is intended only for travelers crossing at Canadian land borders; it does not pertain to commercial shippers. Air travelers from Canada should refer instead to the guidance we provide for international travelers in the “Another Country” section.

Fruits and Vegetables you CAN and CANNOT bring into the U.S. from Canada when crossing at a land border

Travelers crossing a land border into the United States may bring, for personal consumption, some (but not all) fresh fruits and vegetables that were grown on a commercial orchard/farm in Canada, if all of the conditions below are met and confirmed by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists at the border:

  •  Produce is free of soil, pests, and diseases

  • Traveler has sufficient documentation to clearly demonstrate that the item(s) was actually grown in Canada and not just sold there.  Individual stickers on produce or fruit/vegetable bags commercially labeled as “Produce of Canada” may be accepted as proof of origin. You are encouraged to keep sales receipts as additional proof as well.  For produce purchased at a commercial pick-your-own farm, you must have a dated receipt showing the name/address of the farm;

  • Traveler is entering the United States within the May 1–October 31 Canadian growing season if produce is field grown.  Field-grown produce presented for inspection before or after that date range may be refused entry.  However, fresh cucumbers, eggplant, lettuce, squash, and strawberries clearly labeled as having been grown in a commercial greenhouse in Canada may enter the United States year-around.  Sea buckthorn berries may also enter year around; and

  • Produce variety is not listed as prohibited in red drop-down box.

Travelers may not bring U.S.-grown produce they previously brought into Canada back across the border unless the items are whole and still in their original packaging, and any item listed in "Fresh Produce that you CANNOT Bring into U.S." panel below—such as citrus, tomatoes, or peppers—even if U.S.-grown, may not re-enter the United States.  Note: U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists at the border will make the final determination as to what products may enter.

The following is a list of fresh produce that is prohibited or restricted entry:

Allium: (includes chives, garlic, garlic chives, green onion/Welsh onion, green bunching onions, leeks, onion, ramps, scallions, and shallots): all fresh allium bulbs are prohibited unless accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) containing an additional declaration stating the shipment is free of Acrolepiopsis assectella.  CFIA contact information. However, thoroughly dried allium bulbs (papery skin) may enter without such documentation.

Arrowhead (Tuber):  Travelers who wish to bring arrowhead tubers from Canada into the United States must first obtain a PPQ Form 526, Noxious Weed Permit from USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.  Information on how to apply for the permit can be found here .

Avocados: travelers may not bring fresh avocadoes into the United States, as avocado cannot be commercially grown in the Canadian climate.

Bananas: travelers may not bring fresh bananas into the United States (bananas cannot be commercially grown in the Canadian climate).

Blackberries: European blackberries (Rubus fruticosus) are prohibited entry.  However, all other blackberry varieties may enter.  

Cherries: Fresh cherries grown in Ontario Province are prohibited entry into the United States.  However, fresh cherries commercially grown in a Canadian Province other than Ontario may enter if accompanied by documentation demonstrating the Province of origin.

Fresh Chestnuts: travelers are prohibited from bringing chestnuts that were grown in any country other than Canada, Mexico, or the United States.  Chestnuts commercially packaged and labeled as grown in Canada, Mexico, or the United States are allowed entry.

Chives: See Allium above.

Citrus: travelers are prohibited from bringing any type of fresh citrus fruit—even citrus bearing a U.S.-grown label—into the United States.

Coconut: coconut is prohibited entry if liquid and/or any portion of the husk is present.

Corn on the cob: Travelers are prohibited from entering with any variety of fresh corn grown in any Canadian province (except British Columbia) if destined for Arkansas, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, or Utah.  Fresh corn commercially grown in any Canadian Province may enter any other State.  Fresh corn commercially harvested in British Columbia with proof of origin may enter any U.S. State without restriction.

Edible Flowers: Only the following edible flowers from Canada can enter: Calendula spp. (pot marigold), Tagetes spp. (marigold), Tropaeolum spp. (nasturtium), and Viola spp. (johnny-jump-ups, pansies, and violets).  Edible flowers not completely free of stems and leaves will be prohibited entry.

European Blackberries ( Rubus fruticosus): Travelers are prohibited from bringing European blackberries into the United States because that species is considered to be a Federal noxious weed. However, all other blackberry varieties may enter.

Garlic: See Allium above.

Garlic Chive: See Allium above.

Green Onion/Welsh Onion/Green Bunching OnionSee Allium above.

Guava: travelers may not bring fresh guavas into the United States (guava cannot be commercially grown in the Canadian climate). 

Leeks: See Allium above.

Okra: travelers may not bring fresh okra or okra seeds into the Unites States.

Onion: See Allium above.

Papaya: travelers may not bring fresh papayas into the United States (papaya cannot be commercially grown in the Canadian climate). 

Fresh Peanuts: commercially packaged peanuts (raw, in shell, or roasted) labeled as grown in Canada or the United Sates may be allowed entry (note: peanuts grown in certain other countries may be prohibited entry).

Peppers: Travelers are prohibited from bringing any fresh sweet or hot peppers of any variety from Canada into the United States. 

Pineapple: travelers may not bring fresh pineapple into the United States (pineapple cannot be commercially grown in the Canadian climate).

Potatoes (with or without peel):  Travelers may enter the United States with fifty pounds or less of fresh potatoes intended for a traveler’s personal use if free of soil and commercially packaged/labeled as grown either in Canada or the United States.  

Shallot: See Allium above.

Tomatoes: Travelers are prohibited from bringing fresh tomatoes of any variety into the United States, regardless if commercially grown or home grown.

Tropical fruits and vegetables: travelers may not bring any fresh tropical fruits or vegetables into the United States, because such produce cannot be grown in Canada.

Water Spinach (Fresh leaf, fresh green stem): Travelers wishing to enter with fresh perishable water spinach must first obtain a PPQ Form 526,Noxious Weed Permit from USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. Information on applying for the permit can be found here.

Home-grown or backyard-grown fruits and vegetables (as well as any produce lacking a commercial label) grown  in Canada are, in general, prohibited entry into the United States, because in almost all cases there is no way to prove that the produce was actually grown and harvested in Canada. 

Exception: home-grown fruits/vegetables of non-prohibited fruits and vegetables may be allowed entry if the gardener arranges and pays for an onsite inspection of his/her garden or orchard by the Canadian Food Inspection Service (CFIA).  CFIA may then issue the travelling gardener a phytosanitary certificate certifying that the produce was grown and harvested in Canada. For more information, please contact the Canada Food Inspection Aency.

Most fruits and vegetables grown in Canada that were commercially dried are allowed entry into the United States. All such products must be declared and presented at entry, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists will make the final determination as to what products may enter.

Travelers may bring certain commercially packaged frozen fruits and vegetables grown in Canada if the product does not contain any meat products and is frozen solid, (i.e., 20 degrees Fahrenheit or minus 6.6 degrees Celsius) when presented for entry at the border.  However, most produce varieties listed above as prohibited when fresh (allium, citrus, peppers, tomatoes, etc.) are also prohibited when frozen.   All such products must be declared and presented at entry, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists will make the final determination as to what products may enter.

Travelers may bring commercially canned fruits and vegetables (not containing any meat products) into the United States.  All such products must be declared and presented at entry, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists will make the final determination as to what products may enter.

Please contact USDA’s Plant Import Information Line by telephone at toll-free (877) 770-5990 or by email at plantproducts.permits@aphis.usda.gov for further information about documentation you may need to bring fruits and vegetables from Canada into the United States.
Bringing back other products? 

How Do I Declare Agricultural Items?

USDA-trained dogs help sniff out plants and animal products in luggage and carry-on items on international flights.

Make sure you include any agricultural items on your Customs Declaration Form (select form below).  This form provides Customs and Border Protection officials with basic information about who you are and what you are bringing into the United States, such as agricultural and wildlife products and whether you have visited a farm prior to traveling to the United States.

When you declare, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection official can check your items.  This is the only way to be certain that your items are free of plant pests and animal diseases.

 Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Forms

— Customs Declaration Form: English | Spanish | Other Languages

Instructions on filling out the Customs Declaration Form (English)

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