MDA issues consumer advisory regarding sale and consumption of bushmeat

food digest food safety for food handlers

January 14, 2022

In this issue

MDA issues consumer advisory regarding sale and consumption of bushmeat

Illegal product confiscated last month at MSP Airport

St. Paul, MN: The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is reminding consumers that it is illegal to bring bushmeat into the U.S. for sale or consumption. Bushmeat is raw or minimally processed meat that comes from wild animals, such as cane rats, monkeys and other nonhuman primates, and bats. It poses a potential risk of human infection, including the Ebola virus. Bushmeat is often smoked, dried, or salted. These processes are not sufficient to kill viruses and other pathogens. U.S. customs agents reported multiple instances of bushmeat being smuggled from Liberia into Minnesota in December at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The products were seized and destroyed.

There is a $250,000 fine for bringing bushmeat into the United States and the product, in any amount, found at U.S. ports of entry will be destroyed along with any personal items that may have come in contact with the bushmeat.

To report information about sales of bushmeat in Minnesota or the suspected smuggling of bushmeat into Minnesota or the U.S., call the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Anti-smuggling Hotline at 301-734-8534. More information on the illegal importation of bushmeat is available from the CDC.

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Food Digest is a quarterly newsletter written by inspectors from Hennepin
County Public Health Department, and is designed to support and educate Hennepin County food facility owners and operators. Articles focus on food
safety and requirements from the Minnesota Food Code and Hennepin County food ordinance.


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