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May 6, 2009 04:49 AM

TSA just confiscated.... (aka "my creole mustard is contraband")


yep, going through airport security in sw florida, tsa just confiscated my brand new unopened (foil seal and all) zatarain's creole mustard. ;-((. (hey, it is hard to find and over-priced here in d.c.).

i was informed that i could put it in my checked luggage without a problem. (hmm, isn't there a logic issue, here?) but, that would entail me going back to the airline, having them find and retrieve my now-checked luggage (Ha!), putting my mustard somewhere in the bag where it wouldn't get absolutely squished by US airways' expert luggage-tossers, and then going through security again.

was there someone i could give it to? no, my sister had dropped me off and was long-gone. well, could someone there use it? no, tsa has to throw these contraband items away. (so if you go to those security contractor auctions, you can find the odd lot with nail clippers AND a creole mustard!).

i asked them why it was being confiscated, i.e., is this mustard a "liquid" or a "gel"? i was told it is enough like those "textures" to make it verboten in one's carry-on luggage. can i get a receipt? no, it is "contraband". at first, though, they swabbed it with the bomb-detection cloth. then ran it back through the x-ray. then decided it was a no-go.

i was told peanut butter and applesauce are in the same category.

i had a deep-down inkling when i was packing that they might go all tsa on my mustard, but my checked luggage contained new white linen clothing. (not a good fit for splattered mustard, ya know!).

what food items have you had confiscated at the airport security checkpoint?

<i'm just musing that i could've taken it out, smeared it on my body, and done a dance. but would've been ME that was "confiscated." ;-).>

  1. Mustard gas is a chemical weapon after all! Maybe they though you were going to break into the cockpit and smear it in the captain's eyes. Ouch! Yup, TSA is lame. I thought they were going to finally chill out about liquids and gels?

    1. Not a food item, but had an unopened $11 bottle of sunscreen confiscated at Logan Airport last July. Forgot it was in my carry-on. The TSA screener was boorish and insulting. Kind of like a Congressman/woman.

      1. Two years ago I was flying to Boston from Bogota, Columbia. Looking to use up my last pesos, I bought a jar of dulce de leche, delicious sweet caramel-like stuff that as thick -- or thicker -- than peanut butter. No problem until I had to switch planes in Miami. The TSA guard found the dulce in my backpack and, somewhat apologetically, confiscated it, despite my protestations that it was definitely not a liquid. I understood he was only doing his job and, realizing I wasn't going to talk him into letting me take it onboard, I told him that he should at least take it home and enjoy it with his family. He smiled and said, not possible. If he got caught taking something home he'd get fired (which of course makes sense, but still.....).

        1. I had an almost empty bottle of water confiscated at Reagan a while back... I completely forgot it was in my bag after 3 days of meetings and running around DC. The TSA guy was less than polite about it, especially since I had no objections about tossing the bottle and was pretty apologetic about having it in the first place, plus there were only 5-6 people in line at the time.

          1. Liquids, gels, creams, emulsions, you name it, if it's not a solid, it's subject to the 3 oz. or less in a plastic baggie rule.

            The one time I forgot I had a bottle of water in my bag, I just said "please throw it away for me,sorry 'bout that" and they were very nice about it. I hear lots of stories about TSA nastiness, but have yet to experience it.

            I am sorry to hear about your mustard, though.

            1 Reply
            1. re: danna

              thank you for your commiseration, danna. ;-).