Lacey Act


Implementation of Revised Lacey Act Provisions, “Plant Declaration” 

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) recently published a revised plan and schedule for implementation of several changes to the Lacey Act. The changes require a new declaration for “wild plants”, trees, and products made from either of those two. The declaration is required for these products since Dec. 15, 2008, although it is voluntary during the first phase of implementation. The revised plan clarifies several important elements of the changes, including the scope of the products that require declaration and the time period of the implementation phases.

The revised plan includes the following information:

  • Phase II is scheduled to begin on April 1, 2009, at which time the declaration will be required for all items named in Phase II. The declaration will be submitted electronically beginning in Phase II. APHIS states there will be no further changes to Phase II.

  •  The declaration will be enforced only for “formal consumption entries” at this time. Therefore, while the new declaration will not be enforced for informal entries, personal importations, in-transit movements, etc, APHIS reserves the authority to require it at some future date. 

  •  The declaration is required only for the actual imported article, and is not required for “sundries” such as “tags, labels, manuals, and warranty cards” that accompany the imported article.  

  •  Each implementation phase will be six months in length. Full enforcement is scheduled for Oct. 1, 2010, at the completion of Phases III and IV

The APHIS notice includes a complete list of commodities for which a declaration will be required, for each phase of implementation. Phase II covers wood and articles of wood classified in Chapter 44 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the U.S. The data elements required in the new declaration can be found in APHIS form PPQ-505, available on the APHIS website from the link below. 

Additional information:

APHIS Revised Implementation Plan (Federal Register, 2/03/09): http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/pdf/E9-2232.pdf

Lacey Act information: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant_health/lacey_act/