The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bringing Flour to the US from Canada

DonD's picture
DonD

Bringing Flour to the US from Canada

I am going to Montreal in a couple of weeks to visit friends and am planning to bring back some flour from the "Meunerie La Milanaise", the same flour that Daniel Leader uses for his bread. Does anybody have any experience with bringing back flour through customs? I went on the US Customs website and checked their frequently asked questions about what is allowed through customs but flour was not specifically addressed. I send them an e-mail asking the question but have not received an answer yet. I would appreciate input from anybody who has gone through the same experience. Thanks.


Don

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Hi Don,


You might want to call the US Department of Agriculture at 1-877-770-5990 since it is a food item you wish to bring in.


If you do get a clearance on the flour, see if they will give you something in writing as if the US customs agents don't have it on their list, they will confiscate it.


Have a wonderful trip.


 

DonD's picture
DonD

I will contact USDA and try to get a definite answer.


Don

CanuckJim's picture
CanuckJim

Don,


This may or may not help.  I have brought bags of different KA flours by car from New York State into Ontario with no problems.  Then again, our customs regs might be different from yours.  Here, there is no restriction if what you are importing is processed, rather than raw, such as citrus, meats, etc.  This doesn't make a lot of sense, because it was and maybe still is possible to send a bag of grapefruit or whatnot from Florida to a Canadian address.  I've certainly done it with pecans from California.  Good luck.


Jim

deblacksmith's picture
deblacksmith

You may not like this as a way to do this but I have brought back 20 kg (44 pounds) of flour without issue.  They didn't ask and I didn't say I have 44 pounds of flour.


It was an unopened 20 kg bag of flour purchased in Waterloo, Onterio.  It cost me $ 22.00 Can (about 18.00 USA).  It was not a meat, or fresh fruit or item on the USDA list.  It was well within the $ 400 limit for USA and so I did not need to list it.


Always state the type and amount of any alcohol you have.  You are not going to have "drugs" or fire arms so that will not be an issue.  The limits on alcohol are tight, so I only bring back something "special" -- a beer I can't get in the USA or a special bottle of wine -- but nothing else because it is always cheaper in the USA.


Going the other way, some things can be an issue, alcohol again but the limits are higher but it is always ask about because of the higher price (tax) in Canada.  We have a son, daughter-in-law and 2 grandkids living there so we bring gifts etc. and sometimes things  they have purchased via mail order and have sent to us in the USA.  I always state the true value -- and have never been checked.  Then again we are in our 60's and look harmless.


ps:  Have your USA passports and have them out, I think they are now required -- I don't know for sure because I have always had them since I started international travel back in the 1970's.  If you have had a DUI problem in the USA that can now be a big problem going in to Canada -- they almost got Bush a few years back. 


Dave

PaddyL's picture
PaddyL

I know of several people up here who, when they go to the States on holidays, bring Robin Hood flour with them all the time.  You shouldn't have any problems.  I'm in Montreal, by the way; where are you buying this special flour and is it very expensive?

DonD's picture
DonD

I just got a reply e-mail back from US Customs confirming that Canadian flour and other processed grains are allowed to be brought into the US.


Jim, thanks for your input. I have brought some home cured salami as a gift to friends in Canada without any problems. Canada only cares about alcohol and cigarettes.


deblacksmith, thanks for your warning. I have been stopped and given a sobriety test but passed without any problem. I believe they were just training a rookie cop so I have a clean record. Although one time, I had my car stolen in DC and it was recovered without damage but apparently the police filed a stolen car report but never bothered to close the case after it was recovered. About 2 years later, I was driving back from Canada and at the border, they stopped me and detained me for half an hour because I was in a stolen vehicle!


PaddyL, I did some research online and apparently, you can buy the Milanaise flour at "Aubut" 3975 rue Saint Ambroise. I will also ask my friends to investigate for me before I arrive.


Don

PaddyL's picture
PaddyL

I didn't look closely enough!  I buy the Milanaise flour in small bags in the organic section of my supermarket, usually the stone ground ww or rye.  It's good stuff, but on the expensive side.

DonD's picture
DonD

I contacted the Meuneurie La Milanaise and they informed me that I can buy 20 kg bags at Farinex in Boisbriand.


Don