Food watchdogs in Belgium and the Netherlands warn of seed packages sent unsolicited from addresses in China and other Asian countries. Whoever receives such a package is urged to discard the contents and not to put them in the ground.
There is in fact a chance that plant diseases will be brought into circulation in this way. Another danger is that the foreign, unverified seeds may produce plants that can be characterised as invasive plant species that can destroy the existing flora.
Cases of unsolicited seed have been reported in several European countries, such as Belgium and Germany, but also in the United States and Canada. In the Netherlands, no one has come forward yet.
It is unclear why the seeds are being shipped when nothing has been ordered. According to the NVWA, they come from foreign webshops. Together with customs, the authority carries out checks at Schiphol, but so far no invasive or pathogenic seed has been found.
The Belgian FAVV, similar to the NVWA, advises people to throw received parcels in a double closed package in the dustbin. The FASFC does ask people to take a picture of the packaging first and send it to them. the NVWA also asks people to report an unwanted shipment.