Why is FDA reviewing imported grinders?

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.

#1: Post by Richard »

My Niche Duo is held up not by customs per se but, according to DHL, because "Your shipment is under FDA review."

Does anyone know why this is happening? Seems like the administrative state run amok.
-- Richard


#2: Post by Parm »

Have you been able to get in touch with DHL for more information on this yet? I just ordered a Niche (shipped today) so I'm interested to hear how prevalent it is that these are getting held up.

Richard (original poster)

#3: Post by Richard (original poster) replying to Parm »

Short answer, yes.

Longer answer: The shipper (Niche) did not provide any detail on the Commercial Invoice about the Chinese manufacturer, so DHL held it initially for receipt of that information. That was Friday, and of course a weekend is a weekend, so that didn't get sorted until Monday. Then last night and again this afternoon DHL is saying there is a clearance delay because "your shipment is under FDA review." Meanwhile, they have requested (and received) my complete information, including tax number (EIN).
-- Richard

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#4: Post by baldheadracing »

I'm not saying this is what is happening to yours, but if the grinder had remnants of test coffee - even remnants that you can't see - and a dog sniffed it, then things happen because the dogs are trained to detect all manner of illegal stuff - not just drugs - some of which can be confused with coffee or are packaged with coffee. Smugglers disguise contraband with coffee grounds so the dogs are trained to identify coffee. You'll know when you get the grinder because the box will be wrapped in "inspected" tape. It's happened to me with both grinders and used espresso machines that I have imported.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada

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#5: Post by cafeIKE »

I always travelled with good coffee. Once in Mexico, they spread our luggage everywhere and poured out the coffee... never again

Richard (original poster)

#6: Post by Richard (original poster) »

$106.47 duty and fees
-- Richard


#7: Post by flyingtoaster replying to Richard »

Mine was

Regulatory charge (L1): $1.19
Import Export Duties (L2): $34.60
Duty tax receiver (L3): $17.00

Total: $52.79


#8: Post by BKH »

FDA and DEA are separate agencies. DEA makes a bit more sense for inspecting a grinder. FDA :?:

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#9: Post by baldheadracing replying to BKH »

A coffee grinder is a food-related product so jurisdiction is with the FDA Import Program.

Of course, if illegal drugs are found, then that's different. Here the declaration was incomplete but was for a product under FDA jurisdiction. The agency doesn't have the resources to open every package where documentation was incomplete, but they will do some inspection, and in some offices dogs help make the best use of those resources.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada


#10: Post by Marcelnl »

someone at DHL probably needs to take a course in 'exporting to the US rules and regulations'...somehow they seem a bit rigid and over the top in their approach, I had a faff trying to get a sample of roasted coffee shipped, they insisted I needed to get a prior notice to FDA to do what is clearly listed both on the FDA and border patrol website as OK without paperwork.
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