Sunday, June 6, 2010

Ruby Red Tuesday: Red Apple


The most expensive and famous apple in New Zealand is probably the one in Double Oscar-winning actress Hilary Swank's bag when she arrived in Auckland International Airport. Like most international passengers, Hilary was not aware of how strict of Biosecurity restrictions were.

Double Oscar-winning actress Hilary Swank has been told to pay a $200 fine for trying to bring fruit into New Zealand in January 2005.

The American actress has been fined $200 and ordered to pay $30 in costs after she failed to declare an apple and an orange when she arrived at Auckland International Airport from Los Angeles.

She faced a $200 instant fine at the airport but instead wrote a letter defending herself.

However, Manukau District Court, which covers the airport, rejected her letter and imposed the fine with costs in a hearing without lawyers.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (Maf) said Swank had admitted liability and explained the circumstances.

That letter went to the court and was considered on March 18 but court officials refused to say then what had happened until Swank had been told, saying she needed to know before the whole world.

Maf said New Zealand's strict biosecurity regulations were to keep the country free of pests and diseases that could seriously damage our environment, natural resources, threaten our economy and undermine our way of life.

International passengers are obliged to declare all foodstuffs they may be carrying when entering New Zealand.

Biosecurity New Zealand prohibits or restricts the entry of some food products because they can bring in pests and diseases. Pests and diseases brought into New Zealand deliberately or accidentally, could seriously damage our natural resources, threaten our economy, and undermine our way of life.

These restrictions and prohibitions apply to food for both personal and commercial use.

Certain foods may be allowed entry if they have met the requirements of the Import Health Standard (IHS) and have appropriate certificates.

When you arrive in New Zealand, you will be asked to declare any food you are bringing in and show it to biosecurity quarantine inspectors.

They have a bin like the photo and ask you to dispose of fruit and food.

Hilary Swank has been told to pay a $200 fine for trying to bring fruit into New Zealand in January.


Felisol said...

Laws are not that easy to understand.
I know from experience that New Zealand is one of the main exporter of fruit to Norway. Not only the kiwi, but lots of other product including meat, are brought all the way from south to north of the globe.
Why doesn't the law go both ways?

Nothing I can or will do about this, except one more time wonder about in-consequent laws.

Otherwise I like you picture and your report.
New Zealand has the image of mighty and undamaged nature. The beautiful scenery where The Lord of the Ring films were shot.
May you always stay that fresh.

Gigi Ann said...

I can fully understand the reason for not allowing food into NZ. That was quite an interesting article. I had never heard about Hilary Swank's expensive apple and orange story before. Although, I have always heard, if you are going to travel to other countries, try to find out a little about that country and it's laws.

Yes, I am another Ann, but, my name on my birth certificate is actually, Anna. But for some reason when I was growing up I didn't like Anna, so dropped the A, and became Ann, which I like much better. However, when I hear other people with the name Anna, I like it on them. Go figure! ;-) Also, thank you for visiting "My Photo Album" and leaving such a nice comment.

Lois said...

I wonder how many other people have done the same thing, but because they are not famous, no one has heard about it.

Gattina said...

That happened to us when we wanted to cross the New Mexico "border". We had to throw all fruits away not to pay a fine, lol ! Fortunately we didn't have a cow with us (the people there were already mad enough)

Anonymous said...

That is an interesting story, Ann, especially so because we had to declare any food items when entering the Island of Hawaii.

Gattina said...

Sorry to hear that about your school cat. Maybe he has worms ? does he eat ? or maybe he is getting old, then cats are all getting very skinny.

Carletta said...

I've never been to New Zealand but through movie and history series beleive it to be a beautiful country. I applaud it for wanting to keep it that way.
Hillary should pay the fine and be done. :)
Nice post.

Jama said...

I try not to bring any food item when traveling, golden rule is , when not sure it's best to declare! When I visited NZ and Australia with my then young family, I only brought in chilli sauce in packets and declared them.

Jim said...

Hi Ann ~~ That is a scary situation. She should have eaten her stuff there on the spot. Most inspectors will let you do that. Okay to drink your too much booze too.

Happy RT! I'm running late for it. Thank you for peeking in on Amber (cat).

Unknown said...

that's one very expensive apple.