REYNOLDSBURG, OH (July 30, 2020) – After increasing reports of Ohio citizens receiving packages of unsolicited seeds in the mail, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) is again urging the public to report and submit any unsolicited seed packets to ODA. In partnership with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Plant Protection and Quarantine Office, ODA is working to investigate the number of seed packets sent to Ohio, what type of seeds they are, and where they were mailed from.
The USDA-APHIS and ODA are asking Ohioans who have received these unsolicited packages not to open, plant, or throw them away. Instead, citizens should report receiving seeds here and then submit the packages to USDA using one of the following methods:
- If possible, place the materials including the seeds, original packaging material and your contact information in a resealable plastic bag and mail them to USDA-APHIS at the following address:
Attn: USDA -SITC
8995 East Main Street, Building 23
Reynoldsburg, OH 43068
- Place the materials including the seeds, original packaging and your contact information in a resealable plastic bag and drop them off at your county’s OSU Extension Office during business hours. You can find the nearest extension office here. Please note that extension facilities may have COVID-19 specific signage detailing procedures such as wearing a facial covering that must be followed.
Unsolicited seeds could be invasive species, contain noxious weeds, could introduce diseases to local plants, or could be harmful to livestock. Invasive species and noxious weeds can displace native plants and increase costs of food production. All foreign seeds shipped to the United States should have a phytosanitary certificate which guarantees the seeds meet important requirements.
We will have the latest information regarding this investigation on our website.
The Ohio Department of Agriculture will be sponsoring three collection events for farmers wishing to dispose of unwanted pesticides. This year, the collections are happening in Fayette, Hancock and Lake counties.
August 18: Fayette County 9 am – 3 pm
Fayette County Airport
2770 Old Rt 38 NE.
Washington Courthouse, Ohio 43160
*Attention Brown County Residents/Producers: Contact James Morris as soon as possible for more delivery options for the August 18th Sweep. Contact: 937-378-6716.
August 19: Hancock County 9 am – 3 pm
Hancock County Fairgrounds
1017 E. Sandusky Street
Findlay, Ohio 45840
August 25: Lake County 9 am – 3 pm
Perry Coal and Feed
4204 Main Street
Perry, Ohio 44081
The pesticide collection and disposal services are free of charge, but only farm chemicals will be accepted. Paint, antifreeze, solvents, and household or non-farm pesticides will not be accepted.
In keeping with Governor Mike DeWine’s State of Emergency due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, all ODA employees will be wearing face masks/coverings, following social distancing guidelines, and washing/sanitizing their hands and equipment often. It is highly recommended that anyone attending this event follow these guidelines as well. You can find the most up-to-date safety guidelines here.
The pesticide collections are sponsored by ODA in conjunction with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. To pre-register, or for more information, contact the Ohio Department of Agriculture at 614-728-6987.