Canadian officials are investigating after members of the public reported receiving “unsolicited packages of seeds” in the mail.
In a statement issued Tuesday, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) urged anyone who receives a package of unsolicited seeds not to plant them.
“Do not plant seeds from unknown origins,” the statement reads.
Canadians are also being asked not to put the seeds in the garbage or compost where they could sprout.
“Unauthorized seeds could be the seeds of invasive plants, or carry plant pests, which can be harmful when introduced into Canada.”
The CFIA said these species can invade agricultural and natural areas, causing serious damage to the Canada’s plant resources.
The agency said anyone who receives a seed package should contact their regional CFIA office “immediately.”
“Keep the seeds and packaging, including the mailing label until a CFIA inspector contacts you with further instructions,” the statement said.
In a statement on Wednesday, a spokesperson at CFIA said there have been reports from “most Canadian provinces” of people having received unsolicited seed packages of different types.
The CFIA said it is “working and collaborating” with its counterparts in the United States on this issue.
The United States Department of Agriculture says it’s aware of “suspicious,” unsolicited seed packages that appear to have been shipped across the country from China.
-With a file from The Canadian Press