Food Items Allowed And Not Allowed To Carry To USA From India

Foods You Can and Cannot Carry To USA From India

The globalized world has even made the citizens global and travel for the inherent travelers’ trait (amidst each one of us) has just become far easier for such global customers. Among all other places, United States of America has always held a special position for all the travelers possibly because of the distinctions in terms of development, in almost all fields of existence that the country has achieved over the years.


With the increasing craze of visiting the country, either for tourism or for official purposes which includes business and education both, comes its own set of stringent rules and regulations in order to maintain discipline, law, and order within the country. Thus, USA has strict regulations for people visiting the country for any purpose whatsoever. Travelers to USA from India are therefore advised to follow the traveling to USA from India checklist.


Indians are known for their culinary cravings and the spices that they love to use in their culinary experiments. However, while traveling from India to the USA, one should not forget to check out the US customs food restriction in order to avoid the disappointment of their favorite food preparation or product being discarded at the airport. Thus the travelers visiting the United States of America from India are advised to go through the following sections carefully which provides detailed information about the food items that are allowed to be carried to USA from India along with specific instructions about the food items that are not allowed to be carried to USA from India.


Food Items Allowed To Carry To USA From India

Primarily, people traveling to the USA should not forget to disclose and declare the food items being carried by them in order to avoid penalties and fines which may go up to USD 1000. This should be practiced even when the individual believes that such food product would be easily allowed to be carried to the USA.


Some of the food items allowed in USA from India include:

  • Unopened and commercially labeled and packed food products except for any meat or meat products
  • Most types of cheese such as solid cheese (though cheese with meat such as bacon cheddar cheese is not allowed) and soft cheese such as brie and mozzarella
  • Bakery items
  • Chocolate
  • Candies except for Kinder Surprise Eggs since they do not pass the FDA safety regulations for children’s toys
  • Condiments such as Ketchup and Mustard
  • Dry Spices
  • Marmite
  • Vegemite
  • Vinegar
  • Oils (such olive oil and vegetable oil)
  • Packaged spices
  • Honey
  • Coffee
  • Fish and seafood only for personal consumption and quantities including fresh, canned, smoked, dried, and frozen fish and seafood.
  • Tea
  • Baby and infant formula food
  • Jarred and Canned liquids with a product of soft textures such as Peanut Butter should meet the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) rule of 3.4 ounces (100 ml) or less
  • Unopened and commercially labeled (indicating the country of origin and type of meat) Beef and Beef Products from countries known to be not infected by Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) and Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) can be taken though it is best avoided
  • Yogurt (in case they don’t get spoiled during travel)
  • Butter (in case they don’t get spoiled during travel)
  • Sour Cream (in case they don’t get spoiled during travel)
  • Nuts if they are boiled, ground, cooked, over dried, roasted, steamed, or pureed
  • Raw nuts if the shells are removed in case of cashews, almonds, and macadamia
  • Coconut with its husk removed
  • Peeled garlic cloves
  • Ginger only if the roots are clean
  • Dried fruits such as apricots, figs, gooseberries, and tomatillos
  • Powdered drinks in original sealed containers listing ingredients in English (though Customs’ Agent would have the final say)
  • Canned juices
  • Packaged Teas only if they do not contain cocoa, barberry, or loose citrus leaves
  • Roasted and un-roasted coffee (but no pulp for sure)
  • Any Flour starting from cornmeal to wheat
  • Noodles and ramen though without the spice packets containing egg or meat

Food Items That Are Not Allowed To Be Carried To USA

  • Fresh, dried, or canned meat or meat products
  • Milk
  • Rice (because of the chance of harboring insects such as Khapra beetle)
  • Packaged food which appears unsafe and/or contaminated
  • Fresh fruits or vegetables (because of the risk of getting spoiled or infested with insects or diseases)
  • Liquid cheese such as cottage and ricotta from countries of the Middle East, Africa, and Asia (specifically countries which are known to have foot and mouth disease)
  • Eggs and products made from raw eggs
  • Spices from the citrus family such as including lemon, lime, or orange

The above list mentions some food items which are allowed or not allowed to be carried into USA. However, it is advisable to check with the latest FDA regulations and advisories issued by the US administration prior to packing food items.