Officials warn Wisconsin residents to not use unsolicited packages of seeds received through the mail

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MADISON, Wis. (WFRV) – Some Wisconsin residents have received unsolicited packages in the mail containing seeds that appear to have originated from China, according to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP).

The types of seeds in the packages are currently unknown and may contain invasive plant species. Similar packages have been received in other states, including Minnesota, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, and Ohio.

DATCP asks that if you receive a package like this, do not plant or throw away the seeds.

If the seeds are in sealed packaging, do not open the sealed package. If possible, DATCP asks that you retain the original packaging as it may be useful in investigating the issue.

Officials ask that you report the seeds to DATCP using an online form.

After filling out the online form, DATCP asks that you hold onto the seeds and packaging, including the mailing label, until DATCP or APHIS contacts you with further instructions.

All foreign seeds shipped to the United States should have a phytosanitary certificate which guarantees the seeds meet import requirements. Unsolicited seeds could be invasive species, contain noxious weeds, could introduce diseases to local plants, or could be harmful to livestock. Invasive species and noxious weeds can displace native plants and increase costs of food production.

DATCP works closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to prevent the introduction of invasive species and protect Wisconsin’s diverse agricultural industry.

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