There Are People Still Trying to Sneak Illegal Bologna To El Paso
Transporting a ton of groceries from the store can be hassle, especially if you have a full load of food in your car. I can't imagine myself trying to smuggle a ton of meat across the border but it does happen & people get caught. We've seen it happen at least not once, but TWICE last year alone. Sure enough...it happened again this year.
Over 243 pounds of bologna was seized at the Paso Del Norte/ Yselta Border over the period of two separate occasions:
- On January 13th, a 40 year U.S. citizen from Albuquerque, New Mexico under went two inspections: after a check for fruits, vegetables & meat products came up "negative", his vehicle was inspected a 2nd time. This time CBP Agriculture Specialists discovered 5 rolls of Mexican bologna under a bag of chips in the trunk & backseats of the SUV. The drive explained that he buys the meat in Mexico and then resells the meat for twice the price in the United States. 55 pounds were discovered
- On January 21st, a 40 year resident of Pueblo, Colorado was stopped at the Yselta Border for an inspection. After a CBP Officer discovered a roll of Mexican bologna, he called for assistance from CBP Agriculture Specialists. There they discovered an additional 18 rolls of bologna in the trunk, inside the cover liners & hidden with luggage. In total 19 rolls were found equaling out to 188 pounds.
So you might be wondering: why is it a big deal to carry that much bologna across the border? The reason WHY it's a big deal, is explained by Director Field Operations Hector A. Mancha:
"Pork products have the potential to introduce foreign animal diseases that can have devastating effects to the U.S. economy and to our agriculture industry...We ask travelers to declare any items acquired abroad so we can prevent the introduction of potentially harmful products."
As a result both individuals were issued civil penalties of $1,000 for failure to declare commercial quantities of bologna. The bologna was seized and destroyed by CBP.
And this is no means a new phenomena: people have been trying to smuggle meats across the Border for YEARS. You can find at least over 20 different instances reported on the U.S. Customs & Borders Protection website.
So just remember: if you REALLY need all that meat, just take it home with you & eat it. Otherwise, that's just a waste of good food...