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Sniffer beagle detects roast pig’s head in luggage

October 19, 2018 Headline News No Comments Email Email

The keen nose of an official sniffer dog has led airport detection and quarantine authorities to a roasted pig’s head cunningly concealed in an international traveller’s checked luggage – and the official photo of the dog with the contraband was roaring around social media channels last night.

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agriculture specialists assisted by an official inspector beagle made the seizure at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL), often said to be the busiest airport in the world.

CBP Agriculture Detector K-9 “Hardy” (the official name and title of Hardy the beagle, a member of the airport’s Beagle Brigade) alerted human colleagues to his suspicions about a suitcase.

During subsequent examination, CBP agriculture specialists discovered a roasted pig’s head in the baggage of a traveller from Ecuador. The item, weighing nearly a kilogram, was seized and destroyed. A rather startling photo was issued.

American border and agriculture officials face similar challenges to their Australian counterparts in keeping foodstuffs and suspect agricultural items out of the country.

“Our best defence against destructive pests and animal diseases is to prevent the entry of prohibited agriculture products from entering the United States,” Carey Davis, CBP Area Port Director for the Port of Atlanta, commented.

“This seizure at ATL illustrates the tremendous expertise of our four-legged K-9 partners in protecting the United States.”

Pork and pork products from other continents are prohibited from entry into the US to prevent the potential introduction of foreign animal diseases such as foot and mouth disease, classical swine fever and swine vesicular disease.

Anything to declare? US Customs and Border Protection released this image of the illegally imported roast pig’s head, with the officer who made the discovery, Hardy the beagle, looking pleased in the background

When entering the US, travellers must declare all fruit, vegetable or food products to a CBP agriculture specialist or CBP officer and present the items for inspection – regardless of origin.

Australia has similar requirements.

Hardy, a six-year-old rescued Beagle, joined the CBP team at Atlanta Airport in 2015 after completing training at the US Department of Agriculture’s National Detector Dog Training Centre in the state of Georgia.

Written by Peter Needham

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