Background

Import/Export Fees Increase for 2024

The Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has announced the rates it will charge importers and exporters, meat and poultry establishments, and egg products plants in 2024 for providing voluntary, overtime, and holiday inspection and identification, certification, and laboratory services. Effective Jan. 1 these rates are as follows (per hour/per employee).

- basetime: $71.64 (up from $67.12)

- overtime: $87.96 (up from $82.80)

- holiday: $104.28 (up from $98.44)

- laboratory: $103.24 (up from $87.36)

FSIS notes that there will be no change to the fee it assesses to exporters that choose to apply for export certificates electronically through the export component of the Public Health Information System, which remains $4.01 per application.

Exports to China

The USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service reports that on Dec. 22, 2023, China’s State Council Tariff Commission announced it was again extending, through July 31, 2024, exclusions from its Section 301 retaliatory tariffs for 12 agricultural products, including shrimp for cultivation, whey for feed, fishmeal for feed, alfalfa, and seven hardwood products.

Trade Advisory Committee Members Sought

The USDA and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative are accepting applications through Jan. 31 for new members to serve on the Agricultural Trade Policy Advisory Committee, which provides advice on the implementation and enforcement of existing U.S. trade agreements, negotiation of new agreements, and other trade policy matters; and agricultural technical advisory committees on animals and animal products; fruits and vegetables; grains, feed, oilseeds, and planting seeds; processed foods; sweeteners and sweetener products; and tobacco, cotton, peanuts, and hemp. Applicants must have expertise in U.S. agriculture, have experience in international trade, be U.S. citizens, and qualify for a security clearance.

Poultry from Canada and Japan

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is restricting the importation of poultry, commercial birds, ratites, avian hatching eggs, unprocessed avian products and byproducts, and certain fresh poultry products originating from or transiting the following areas based on determinations that highly-pathogenic avian influenza exists in domestic birds in those zones.

- zone PCZ-227 in Alberta, Canada, (effective Dec. 8)

- zone PCZ-228 in British Columbia, Canada (effective Dec. 13)

- Gunma Prefecture in Japan (effective Jan. 1)

Processed avian products and byproducts originating from or transiting any restricted area, imported as cargo, must be accompanied by an APHIS import permit and/or government certification confirming that the products were treated according to APHIS requirements. Further, importation as cargo of fresh, unprocessed shell/table eggs and other egg products, void of the shell (i.e., liquid eggs, dried egg whites), originating from or transiting any restricted zone is prohibited unless the products are consigned from the port of arrival directly to an APHIS-approved breaking and pasteurization facility. An import permit and/or certificate is not required for these shipments when consigned directly to an APHIS-approved establishment.

Separately, APHIS has removed these restrictions on imports originating from or transiting Saga Prefecture (effective Dec. 27), Ibaraki Prefecture (effective Dec. 29), Saitama Prefecture (effective Dec. 31), and Kagoshima Prefecture (effective Jan. 2) in Japan, and zone PCZ-222 in Alberta, Canada (effective Jan. 3). after the HPAI outbreaks in these areas were completely resolved.

Pork from Bangladesh

Effective Nov. 22, 2023, and until further notice, the APHIS is restricting the importation of live swine, swine germplasm, and unprocessed products and byproducts originating from or transiting Bangladesh based on the diagnosis of African swine fever in domestic swine. Processed pork products and byproducts may still be imported as cargo from Bangladesh but must be accompanied by an import permit and/or government certification, or both, confirming that the products were treated according to APHIS requirements.

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