Import Quarantines for Live Animals to be Focus of Upcoming USDA Meetings
The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is hosting a series of public meetings to provide a forum for discussion on the current and future capacity for live animal import quarantines. These meetings will be held Feb. 19 in El Segundo, Calif., Feb. 25 in Clarksville, Ind., Feb. 27 in Chicago, Ill., March 3 in Riverdale, Md., March 5 in East Elmhurst, N.Y., and March 11 in Miami, Fla. APHIS will also consider any written statements received on or before May 12.
APHIS currently operates three animal quarantine facilities and also authorizes the use of privately owned and operated quarantine facilities for certain animal importations. The upcoming meetings will provide an opportunity for members of the public (including other federal and state regulatory agencies) to provide input to help APHIS develop and implement possible alternatives to existing requirements and oversight for live animal quarantines. Tentative topics to be discussed include general considerations in choosing import quarantine services, considerations in choosing a particular location for animal quarantine, expectations regarding e-commerce and animal import quarantine, experience with quarantine facilities in other countries, the impact of marketplace changes on animal import quarantine, and other options, ideas or topics APHIS should consider before making any changes to current animal import quarantine processes.