Odisha

Invasive Species & Pathogen Scare: Centre Warns Of Mystery Seed Parcels

Bhubaneswar: The Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare has warned all States to keep a watch on seed parcels from unknown sources. Since the last few months, thousands of such suspicious seed shipments have been reported across the world.

The threat of unsolicited/suspicious seed parcels with mislabeled packages from unknown sources was reported in many countries like US, Canada, UK, New Zealand, Japan and some European nations, a letter issued by Department of Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers Welfare to all State Governments read.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) termed it as ‘brushing scam’ and ‘agricultural smuggling’ and also reported that the unsolicited seed parcels may contain seeds of an alien invasive species or an attempt to introduce pathogens or disease that may pose serious threats to environment, agriculture ecosystem and national security, the Department’s letter signed by Deputy Commissioner (Quality Control), Dilip Srivasthva added.

“These unsolicited seed parcels can be threat to bio-diversity of our country: therefore all States Department of Agriculture, State Agriculture Universities, Seed Associations, State Seed Certification Agencies. Seed Corporations, ICAR vis-à-vis their crop based research Institutes are directed to be vigilant about the suspicious seed parcels,” the Department stated.

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