Richard Bunn

A note about illegal plant imports

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A few days ago it came to our attention that a CPUK member had stated they had a Sarracenia cultivar S. ‘Waccamaw’ (which happens to be a crossing between two S. flava var atropurpurea plants) illegally imported into Europe.  This member was subsequently banned from CPUK.  The reason for the ban was two-fold.  

Firstly, no Phytosanitary Certificate was obtained.  Apart from being a legal requirement, these inspections are needed for international trading to prevent the spread of pests and diseases (such as the Sarracenia rhizome boring pest).  

Secondly, all Sarracenia species are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), with S. flava (and this was a flava) being listed under Appendix II.  No export and import permits were obtained for this plant.  The member admitted to it being smuggled in the mail.  

As a few members requested to be placed on a waiting list for this plant at the time, it is worth pointing out that it is not just the one plant that may be seized by the authorities and destroyed.  The whole collection in which the plant resides can be seized, as can collections of people who have received a illegally traded piece.  Please take a moment to think about that.  Was it really worth that risk?

CPUK has always taken a strong stance against illegal trading, whether a plant was removed from the wild or was reproduced by seed.  The Carnivorous Plant Society has conservation at it’s very heart, and this also extends to hoping we can protect our territories from foreign pests and diseases.  

Let us all try to not give our hobby a bad name.

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