U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA/APHIS)

Phytosanitary Certificate Requrements by USDA/APHIS
There has been a lot of buzz recently on the requirement of original Phytosanitary Certificates and  Preclearance Certificates into Port Everglades, but the reality is that it is all ports in the US that are going to start enforcing the receipt of these original documents on products where they are a requirement of entry.  Please remember that not all products fall under this category.  
Below we are providing a list of some of the productS that must have the originals before the release of cargo:
Avocados –      Perú, Chile, México
Bell Peppers – Honduras, Guatemala, Netherlands
Peppers All  –  El Salvador
Blueberries –   Peru  and Chile (only on pre-cleared)
Citrus –           Peru, South Africa, and Chile (on pre-cleared)
Mangos –        All Countries' ( precleared PPQ-203)
Papayas –       Guatemala, Brazil, Panama and Belize
Rambután –     Costa Rica, Honduras,  Guatemala and El Salvador
Tomatoes  –    Honduras,  Guatemala and Dominican Republic
Before you import any product you should consult with us in order to make sure you have the required documentation.

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Continuing a partnership that began more than 20 years ago, Maria Bermudez and Patricia Compres launched Advance Customs Brokers & Consulting LLC, based in Miami, FL, in early 2013, and are very happy the way the firm is progressing more than a year later.

The two customs brokers first started working together in 1991 when Compres joined Customized Brokers, a customs clearing house that Bermudez hired a few years earlier. It is a partnership that has endured through the sale of that firm and the launch of this new one. Bermudez said that this time around the business model is a bit different but service will still be their hallmark.

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Miami, FL USA – A container of grapes from Peru arrived, passed protocol and was cleared for entry into Port Everglades on the evening of Friday November 29, becoming the first cold treated container of imported fresh produce to arrive into the South Florida port. The arrival also makes Advance Customs Brokers & Consulting the first customs brokerage firm to clear fresh cold treated grapes for admissibility into the port and Peruvian grape producer Camposol the first grower to successfully export product into this region of the US. 

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Due to high incidents of interception of insects on Blueberries arriving into the US from Chile, the Department of Agricultural has just advised that all Blueberries arriving from CHILE, MUST TREATED AND PRECLEARED as condition of entry.
Consignments (blueberry and fig) must be precleared and accompanied by a PPQ Form 203 signed by the APHIS inspector on site in Chile to validate foreign site preclerance treatment.
Maritime vessels carrying precleared consignments may be validated by a vessel report from APHIS.
If the consignment is not precleared, REFUSE ENTRY.

Absolutely Everything You Need To Know About How the Government Shutdown Will Affect Your Imports

CBP – Customs and Border Protections: Will remain staffed an operational

Any activity and/or function that qualifies for the "protection of human life or property" exception is limited  to situation in which the department of Homeland Security Component Head determines that imminent danger to life or property would result from the termination or diminution of that activity or function.

Administrative, research, or other support functions related to an exempt activity should also continue, but only to the extent that they are essential to maintain the effectiveness of those activities and/or functions that are engaged in the protection of life or property, and at a minimum level.


  • Maintaining criminal law enforcement operations, including drug and illegal alien interdiction.
  • Continuing passenger processing and cargo inspection functions at ports of entry.
  • Providing the protective functions of the U.S. Secret Service.
  • Maintaining counter-terrorism watches or intelligence gathering or dissemination in support of terrorist threat warnings.
  • Retaining minimal personnel to maintain telecommunications as they relate to exempt activities.

Department of Homeland Security: 14% of the 231,117 employees would go home.

Department of Health and Human Services: (FDA) 52% of 78,198 employees would be sent home. (Many food regulators will stay).  Most of the FDA Releases are electronic, manual releases will be slower.

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The global shipping industry is oversupplied. Because supply far exceeds demand, shipping rates have plummeted, as have the prices of ships. Some shipping companies have sought to capitalize on this trend by purchasing newer, larger ships at lower prices so that they can remain price competitive. But unless demand rebounds by the time these ships become operational, the industry's oversupply problem will only worsen.

It is unclear whether the global shipping industry will normalize before these new ships enter the market. Demand could rise as the global economy recovers, or the supply of ships could somehow fall. But the economy's recovery could just as well be slower than anticipated. Several factors could prevent the industry from righting itself, not the least of which are inaccurate forecasts of future market behavior. In fact, the current state of global shipping was caused in part by incorrect predictions of continued growth prior to the 2008 financial crisis. In any case, continued poor performance and a sluggish global economy could eventually force the shipping industry to restructure.


The most important factor to consider, in assessing the state of the shipping industry, is the state of the global economy. The international shipping industry accounts for approximately 90 percent of global trade by volume and is essential for connecting large sectors of the world's economy. Since 1734, the industry has seen more than 20 boom-bust cycles, which occur roughly once per decade. The most recent cycle began in 2004 and peaked in 2008 before declining rapidly at the onset of the global financial crisis.

The downturn afflicted each of the industry's three main categories: tanker, dry bulk and container. While the volume of global trade has recovered somewhat — it grew 4 percent in 2011, marking a 16 percent growth in ton-kilometers — the shipping industry is still reeling from the financial crisis.

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Written by guest writer: Tiffany Comprés, of Comprés + McCaffery, P.A., fresh produce lawyers.

Effective July 9, 2013, Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) is now issuing liquidated damages (essentially, a fine secured by a bond) of $5,000 per violation for inaccurate, incomplete or untimely Importer Security Filings (ISF).  If an ISF is not filed 24 hours before the goods are loaded and before they arrive in the United States,  CBP may withhold the release or transfer of the cargo. Additionally, noncompliant cargo could be subject to further inspection upon arrival. This is in addition to CBP's use of manifest holds and non-intrusive inspections to enforce ISF compliance.

The consequences of not filing timely and accurate information can obviously have serious negative effects on your fresh cargo. In addition, this rule makes importers liable for information that is not in the importer's control but in the shipper's control.

Although CBP stressed that every liquidated damages enforcement action instituted by a port will be reviewed by CBP headquarters personnel before it is issued, you should take action to ensure that you are not liable for another party's $5,000 mistake.

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USDA/ APHIS is advising the public that they have determined that it is necessary to immediately add to the Plant Protection and Quarantine Treatment Manual an additional treatment schedule for methyl bromide fumigation of blueberries for Mediterranean fruit fly and South American fruit fly. We have prepared a treatment evaluation document that describes the new treatment schedule and explains why we have determined that it is effective at neutralizing these fruit flies. We are making the treatment evaluation document available to the public for review and comment.

A treatment schedule currently listed in the PPQ Treatment Manual (T101-i-1-1) requires blueberries to be treated with methyl bromide at 70 °F or above using 2 lbs gas/1,000 ft [3] for 3.5 hours at normal atmospheric pressure whether in chambers or under tarpaulin to mitigate risk from two fruit fly species, Ceratitis capitata (Mediterranean fruit fly, or Medfly) and Anastrepha fraterculus (South American fruit fly). Because the 70 °F-or-above requirement has presented an undue economic hardship for the exporters, in 2009 Argentina requested and subsequently provided the supporting efficacy data for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to approve a new methyl bromide treatment to be applied in chambers at a lower temperature (59 °F or above) for control of Medfly and South American fruit fly. After reviewing the data provided, APHIS found the results to be acceptable with a slight modification of temperature.

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unloading cust0ms

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) ha anunciado la siguiente fase de cumplimiento de la Declaración de Seguridad del Importador (ISF) atraves de una multa monetaria, la cual se hará efectiva el próximo 9 de Julio, 2013.

CBP iniciará esta fase de multas monetaria en conjunto con la retencion e inspección de las cargas para enforsar el cumplimiento del ISF.   Hasta este momento y con el fin de lograr el máximo cumplimiento de estas regulaciones con la menor cantidad de interrupciones en el comercio y en las operaciones portuarias nacionales, el Departamento de Aduanas y Protección de Fronteras de los Estados Unidos (CBP) ha estado aplicando medidas con mesura y sentido común.

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unloading cust0msCustoms and Border Protection (CBP) has announced the next phase of its Importer Security Filing (ISF) Enforcement with liquidated damages, will be become effective on July 9, 2013.

CBP will begin the liquidated damages phase of ISF enforcement, adding the use of manifest holds and non-intrusive inspections to enforce ISF compliance. In order to achieve maximum compliance with the least amount of disruption to the trade and to domestic port operations, CBP has been applying a measured and commonsense approach to enforcement.

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