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Mystery seeds arrive in Calcasieu parish family's mailbox

Posted at 10:21 PM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-28 23:37:53-04

MOSS BLUFF — A Calcaseiu Parish woman is one of hundreds across the country who recently received mysterious seeds in the mail.

"You don't really know how or why they're sending them to you. Why are we picked out from everyone in the U.S.? Nothing ever happens here," Darci Portie said.

Since last week, the Department of Agriculture and Forestry has been warning people to be on the lookout for the unexpected mail.

"You open it and it's just a little pack of seeds," Portie said.

Portie received the small unexpected package on Sunday from United Arab Emirates, but in many cases the seeds are coming from a mailing address in China.

"I thought maybe one of the girls had ordered something, I wasn't quite sure I ordered anything," Portie said.

She said she remembered seeing something similar on Facebook and was shocked.

"I was a part of this crazy seed thing, and I didn't know what to do with it."

The LDAF say since Friday they have received 300 calls of people receiving the small packages with the mysterious seeds that they did not order. Packages are being labeled as things like jewelry or beads, like Portie's.

"I asked the lady today, and she said she didn't know of any reason yet, of who is getting them, except it may have something to do with Amazon or Wish," Portie said.

The LDAF says if you receive the seeds do not take them out of the bag, do not handle them, do not throw them away, do not burn them, and most importantly, do not plant them. Instead call their office. Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain, D.V.M. said the department needs to identify the seeds to ensure they do not pose a risk to Louisiana’s agricultural industry or the environment.”

"I'd hate to plant something out of curiosity and find out it wiped out the entire rice crop for next year or knocked out crawfish season," Portie said.

Anyone who may receive any similar packages is asked to call LDAF at 225-925-4733. LDAF says their inspectors will collect the seeds and test them for positive identification.