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138 Perishable Matter

138.1 Animals

All live or dead animals are nonmailable, except the following:

  1. Live bees, leeches, silkworms, and flies of the family Drosophilidae (see DMM 601.9.3.8).
  2. Dead insects or reptiles, when thoroughly dried.
  3. Parasites and predators of injurious insects, if the following conditions are met:
    1. They are admissible in the domestic mail.
    2. They are useful in controlling harmful insects.
    3. They are exchanged by officially recognized scientific or health agencies.
    4. They are sent by First-Class Mail International service, First-Class Package International Service, or Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes or Small Flat Rate Priced Boxes.
    5. Mailable animals must be in containers conforming to the requirements in the DMM.

138.2 Plants

Plants, seeds, and plant materials, including fruits and vegetables, are subject to the provisions of Publication 52, chapter 5; Publication 14, Prohibitions and Restrictions on Mailing Animals, Plants, and Related Products; and the quarantine regulations of the country of destination. Customers can obtain information from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) Programs at:

USDA APHIS PPQ
4700 RIVER RD
RIVERDALE MD 207371228

138.3 Eggs

138.31 Restrictions

Eggs may be sent only by Priority Mail International. See 550 for nonpostal regulations on dried whole eggs.

138.32 Packaging

Eggs must be packaged in the following manner:

  1. Eggs mailed to any country except Canada must be placed in a metal egg container. Each egg must be packed in cushioning material. The metal egg container must be enclosed in an outer container of wood with cushioning packed between the two containers.
  2. Eggs mailed to Canada may be packed either as prescribed in 138.32a or in a box of rigid material with a tight–fitting lid. Each egg must be wrapped in protective material and placed on end. Vacant spaces in the box must be filled with packing material to prevent the eggs from striking each other or the box.

138.4 Food and Other Perishable Articles

Fruits, vegetables, fresh meats, and other articles that easily decompose or that cannot reasonably be expected to reach their destination without spoiling are nonmailable.