As the price of eggs continues to rise across the country, some are now turning to smuggling eggs across the southern border to get them for a cheaper price.
As reported by the New York Post, there has been a 108 percent increase in the amount of eggs confiscated at the border over the last four months, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
In most cases, border authorities have seen many more cases “in the last week or so where the eggs were not declared and then discovered during an inspection,” said CBP spokesman Roger Maier. “When that happens the eggs are seized and the individual is assessed a $300 civil penalty.” The fine can reach as high as $10,000 for anyone who tries again, or tries to smuggle in “commercial size imports.”
As inflation continues to rise, a simultaneous shortage in hens across the country has led to a surge in the price of eggs, with some cities seeing prices as high as $8 a carton. Meanwhile, a container of 30 eggs still sells for as low as $3 in Mexico.
Eggs are considered “prohibited products” by the Border Patrol due to the risk of the eggs from Mexico being unclean, either carrying diseases or by being uncooked; meats and other forms of food are similarly banned from being transported across the border. Any confiscated eggs are subsequently sent to an incinerator.
“They have to understand, it is a prohibited product; we’re not going to allow it to make entry,” said CBP Supervisory Agricultural Officer Charles Payne. “If you declare it, we’ll pick them up, no penalty issued. If you fail to declare or you attempt to smuggle it, it’s going to be a penalty.”