Homeland Security is now an important aspect when importing products. The ‘Customs Small Business Program’ is a great place to access important security issues when importing in www.cbp.gov
The US Customs Department has developed strict guidelines for importing products into the US. The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are now under the US Department of Homeland Security (www.dhs.gov). Increased domestic security has created new regulations for importing into the US. One of the new regulations is the 24 hour rule of the Automated Manifest System or AMS. This 24 Hour AMS rule requires presentation of the cargo declaration 24 hours before lading of the vessel. You must insist that foreign exporters adhere to US Department of Homeland Security regulations or you can find yourself with delays and troubles.
The Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) is now implementing the C-TPAT or Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism. This partnership is between customs and industry leaders regarding strengthening supply chain security. Understanding US Customs regulations before you make importing arrangements will help map out the most expedient method for importing and distributing your merchandise once it arrives.
The following websites are specific, governmental agency websites. They are informative for particular regulation and up to date international trade law information. The Federal Maritime Commission at- www.fmc.gov and the International Trade Commission at the www.usitc.gov and The United States Trade Representative at www.ustr.gov
For assessment of regulatory risks associated with agricultural imports in particular, access the US Department of Agriculture at www.usda.gov. To learn more about regulations regarding importing Animal and Plants, check out the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services at www.aphis.usda.gov.