May 29, 2015
Travelers and residents alike are reminded not to introduce agricultural pests when traveling to Florida this summer.
On average, at least one pest or disease is introduced into this state every month, including ones that are new to Florida, new to the continent or new to the hemisphere. The “Don’t Pack a Pest” public awareness campaign helps safeguard Florida’s $120 billion agricultural economy from invasive, destructive pests and disease brought by unsuspecting travelers.
The campaign was launched in 2011 to raise awareness of the importance of declaring agricultural products brought into the United States by travelers. Products that should be declared include fresh fruits, vegetables, cut flowers, plant material, animal products and firewood, among others.
Travelers can visit DontPackaPest.com to see what food, plants and animals could harm Florida’s agriculture and the more than two million jobs it supports.
The “Don’t Pack a Pest” campaign is a collaborative campaign developed by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection.