USDA APHIS Reverses Faulty Decision, Will Allow Importation of Game Bird Meat from Canada

  • Earlier today, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) issued an announcement that reverses the previous decision to prohibit the importation of unprocessed game bird meat from Canada.
  • Less than two weeks ago, APHIS announced they were going to prohibit the importation of unprocessed game bird meat with the intention of reducing the spread of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (avian flu) without conducting a risk assessment study.
  • Following the prohibition announcement, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) and our partners, including Canada’s Parliamentary Outdoor Caucus, worked to see this short-sighted decision reversed.

Why It Matters: One day after waterfowl seasons opened in many Canadian provinces, APHIS issued an announcement on Friday, September 2 around 6:30 pm eastern leading up to the Labor Day holiday weekend, that banned the importation of game bird from Canada. This decision was not rooted in science, however, the announcement by APHIS to rescind this decision is welcome news.

Earlier today, the United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service issued an announcement that reverses the previous decision to prohibit the importation of unprocessed game bird meat from Canada.

Less than two weeks ago, leading up to the Labor Day holiday weekend, APHIS published an announcement that effectively prohibited the importation of unprocessed game bird meat from Canada. Compounding the timing of the announcement is the fact that APHIS has not conducted a risk assessment study of how these restrictions would help reduce the spread of avian flu. Additionally, the APHIS announcement fails to recognize the fact that millions of waterfowl and other game birds migrate from Canada to the United States each year.

Following the original prohibition announcement, CSF coordinated with many of our partners to urge APHIS to rescind this decision. CSF also worked with Canada’s Parliamentary Outdoor Caucus, a caucus that closely mirrors the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, to urge APHIS to reverse this decision. As a result, the Parliamentary Outdoor Caucus sent a letter to USDA that stated “This decision will have a severe negative economic impact on tourism, guide and outfitter industries across Canada that are just beginning to recover from the devastating impacts of COVID border restrictions”.

The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation is grateful to see APHIS reverse their original short-sighted decision that lacked a scientific justification and would have caused significant impacts on Canadian guides as well as American hunters, who were already hunting when the decision was first announced.

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