Section 8e inspection requirement: an importer must have the shipment inspected for size, grade, and quality requirements to receive a United States’ USDA/AMS inspection certificate. Review the import requirements of the individual commodities through the links provided on the overview page ‘Section 8e and Imports’ Contact the appropriate Specialty Crop Inspection office location or processed commodity inspection office prior to entry for specific details on how to obtain release of the commodity from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Service (CBP).
For questions about meeting Section 8e import regulations or the electronic filing process please contact our Compliance and Enforcement Branch at (888) 551-3523. You can also learn more about the CBP’s ACE system and how to make it work for you by viewing a pre-recorded webinar.
Exporters in Canada of Canadian potatoes, onions, and tomatoes may have their product inspected by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) prior to importation into the United States. The CFIA has been identified in the potato, onion, and tomato import regulations as a governmental inspection service for the purpose of certifying grade, size, quality and maturity of imported potatoes, onions, and tomatoes being imported into the United States from Canada. It is also noted that these import regulations are currently being amended to require Canadian exporters of potatoes, onions, and tomatoes into the United States to enter the CFIA certificate number and an electronic image of the CFIA certificate into CBP’s ACE system, which will transmit said certificate number and image to MOAD.
Note: that a quality inspection and release issued by AMS is a different inspection and release than that issued by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
If a shipment failed the Section 8e inspection: the importer may take one or more of the following actions listed below. Each transaction must be accompanied with the proper documentation.
Actions and Proper Documentation
- Action 1 - Recondition the shipment that currently fails 8e import requirements and have it re-inspected, including the dumping of any culls.
Documentation 1 - USDA, AMS re-inspection certificate(s) for all reconditioned units meeting 8e import requirements and a dumping certificate for all dumped units. These items must equal the original volume of the imported shipment which initially failed 8e import requirements. The dumping of failed product must be witnessed by an inspector. Re-inspection certificates and certificates documenting dumping of culls will be automatically submitted by the Inspection Service to CEMS and will be reconciled to the original failing certificate. However, if the weights do not reconcile the importer will be contacted. The importer may also be contacted by MOAD and requested to submit the actual documentation.
- Action 2 - Re-export shipment
Documentation 2 - Customs Form 7512 signed by Customs personnel or with Customs date hole-punch stamp, or a Customs Form 7512 stamped “QP IN BOND AUTHORIZED” with a paid freight bill showing destination and proper quantity of product being re-exported which initially failed 8e import requirements. The 7512 form is not entered into ACE, and therefore, the importer will receive an auto-generated letter for any non-reconciled shipment. If the importer receives an e-mail regarding a non-reconciled shipment, the importer will hit the ‘reply’ button and attach the 7512 form which will be transmitted to MOAD for further review. Importers can also choose to be proactive and e-mail the 7512 form to MOAD at 8eImports@ams.usda.gov.
- Action 3 - Send shipment to exempt use provided for in the specific commodity’s import regulations
Documentation 3 - A properly executed Importers Exempt Commodity Form (SC-6) filed through the Compliance and Enforcement Management System (CEMS). If the volume of the imported shipment which failed inspection matches with the volume found on a properly executed SC-6, the shipment will reconcile. The SC-6 exemption form must now be filed through CEMS. The MOLS system previously utilized by AMS has been transitioned to CEMS. Visit Section 8e Exemptions – SC-6 Certificate for further information on the new CEMS and SC-6 Certificates. Also, visit Filing a SC-6 Certificate in CEMS for directions for registering for CEMS and instructions on filing a SC-6 Certificate. Also review the list of acceptable exempt uses under Section 8e Exemptions- SC-6 Certificate and under the 8e import requirements from that particular commodity.
- Action 4 - Destroy, dump, or dispose
Documentation 4 - USDA, AMS certificate documenting all units being discarded. This item must equal the original quantity of the imported shipment which failed 8e import requirements. The dumping of failed product must be witnessed by an inspector. Re-inspection certificates and certificates documenting dumping of culls will be automatically submitted by the Inspection Service to CEMS and will be reconciled. However, if the weights do not reconcile, the importer will be contacted. The importer may also be contacted by MOAD and requested to submit the actual documentation. Since July 23, 2016, CBP has required all importers to submit their entry filings through the ACE as part of a government-wide deployment of the new International Trade Data System (ITDS). The ACE electronic interface is accelerating the processing of entry filings for all importers by automating clearance processes by all government agencies, including AMS. To accomplish this, CBP requires each government agency to electronically message back to ACE with the status of each entry filing. With ACE, importers will be able to determine the entry status under AMS or any other Agency’s requirements that determine release by CBP for entry into the United States. Presenting your products for AMS inspection segregated by Customs Entry Number allows AMS to notify CBP so that your products can be released into the channels of commerce quickly and efficiently.