The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services (APHIS) will require importers of earthworms to obtain a Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) 526 Permit beginning July 1, 2022.
Earthworms may transport animal and plant pathogens through ingested soil that detrimentally affect plant growth and diversity in the United States. Import permits will only be issued for earthworms imported from countries free from food-and-mouth disease (FMD). Countries free from FMD may be found on APHIS’ Animal Health Status of Regions webpage.
APHIS has developed webpages on Earthworms and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to assist importers with meeting import requirements. Importers must comply with the strict conditions related to the rearing and shipping of earthworms to obtain the PPQ 526 Permit. Questions regarding the PPQ 526 permit may be directed to Pest.Permits@usda.gov. The PPQ 526 Permit may be applied for using APHIS ePermits.