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Minnesota officials issue warning about traveling with bushmeat

The reminder from state agriculture leaders comes after U.S. Customs officials reported that they confiscated bushmeat at MSP Airport last month.

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ST. PAUL โ€” Minnesota Agriculture officials on Friday, Jan. 14, issued a warning to travelers that it is illegal to carry bushmeat into the United States for sale or consumption.

The notice comes after Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport officials reported multiple instances of bushmeat being smuggled into the country last month. The products transferred from Liberia were confiscated and destroyed, according to U.S. Customs agents.

Bushmeat comes from monkeys and other nonhuman primates and is raw or processed by smoking, drying or salting. Because of the minimal processing, the meat can carry viruses and pathogens, like Ebola, that are dangerous to people.

Illegally transporting any amount of bushmeat into the United States carries a $250,000 fine. And federal officials at U.S. ports can confiscate and destroy the meat, along with any personal items that might've touched it.

Dana Ferguson is a Minnesota Capitol Correspondent for Forum News Service. Ferguson has covered state government and political stories since she joined the news service in 2018, reporting on the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the divided Statehouse and the 2020 election.
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