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Oct 23, 2009 12:06 AM

bringing cheese, olives home to U.S. from Europe

forgive me since i know there have been threads on this before but i'm in spain/italy w very limited internet and a keyboard built for someone w less fingers than i so i'm spending my one call on the folks that i know will know: what can i bring back, foodwise, from europe? i'm looking to bring cheese, olives, olive oil, vinegar and anchovies. what are the rules and what have you gotten by with? very grateful for answers!

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  1. This is from US Customs and Border Patrol--I have cut and pasted what seem to be the most important parts-- in general it looks like you shouldn't have problems.

    Failure to declare food products can result in a $10,000 fine.

    Bakery items, candy, chocolate, and cured cheese are generally admissible. Canned goods and goods in vacuum packed jars (other than those containing meat or poultry products)are also generally admissible if being imported for personal use.

    Dairy items such as milk, yogurt, butter are generally admissible, although this is subject to change, depending on disease outbreaks. Eggs may be admissible, although frequent outbreaks of Exotic Newcastles Disease and avian flu make it very likely that they will be denied entry. Hard cured cheese such as parmesan or cheddar are generally admissible, soft cheeses such as brie and soft curd cheese and cheese in water(ricotta, feta, etc.) are not.

    Condiments such as oil, vinegar, mustard, catsup, pickles, syrup, honey, jelly, jam, etc., are generally admissible.

    Other then the above general guidelines, it is impossible to advise you in this forum about the admissibility of specific food items because it is so susceptible to change. Disease and pest outbreaks, which impact the admissibility status of fresh and packaged food items, occur all over the world at a moments notice.

    Here's the link if you want to