The Agricultural Board said that, in recent weeks, there has been an increase in cases of people trying to bring plant seeds from Russia to Estonia that are prohibited by law.
The Tax and Customs Board and the Agricultural Board stress that all seeds brought from outside the European Union must have a phytosanitary certificate, there is no longer an exemption for seeds for one's own use and for a small quantity of seeds.
This requirement also applies to plants, cut flowers, fruit and vegetables, garden and wild berries, and the rule must be respected by both business and private persons. Import of seeds of plant species of arable and market-garden crops subject to certification from Russia is not allowed, the Agricultural Board said.
Aleksander Miksjuk, chief specialists of the customs department of the Tax and Customs Board, said that, due to a warm winter, there have been many discoveries since the beginning of the year on the eastern border where people bring seeds to Estonia that should not be brought here.
"Soon, the sowing season will begin and the seed transport will become even more intense, so we hereby remind people that they should not bring seeds from Russia to Estonia," Miksjuk said.
As of December 14, 2019, the import rules for plants and plant products changed in Estonia and other European Union member states. The new rules and requirements are designed to prevent the spread of harmful pests.
"Certified seeds are controlled by quality and production chain. The phytosanitary certificate is issued by the plant protection service of the country of origin," Piia Puusepp, adviser at the organic farming and seed department of the Agricultural Board, said.
"It is not permitted to import seeds of plant species subject to certification from non-listed countries into Estonia. Seeds of plant species not subject to certification may be imported provided they hold a phytosanitary certificate," Puusepp added.
Editor: Helen Wright