How Illegal Items Are Found And Destroyed At JFK Airport

How Illegal Items Are Found And Destroyed At JFK Airport

[Narrator] About 43,000
international travelers fly in to New York’s John F.
Kennedy Airport every day. By passenger volume,
it’s the US’s largest international
airport of entry. And in just
Terminal 4 alone, that equates to almost
1,000 bags an hour. And in those suitcases,
there’s a lot of stuff, some of which isn’t
allowed into the country, including 120 pounds
of food per day. So what happens
to all those confiscated items
anyway? If you flew in to
JFK in the ’90s, getting something into
the US was a lot easier. But after 9/11,
a conversation started about how to
protect the country from dangerous foods,
drugs, and people. And US Customs and
Border Protection, as it’s known today,
was formed. You’ll generally see two kinds of CBP
officials at airports: officers, like Steve, and agriculture
specialists, like Ginger. Their job is to find,
seize, and destroy millions of items each year that don’t belong
in the United States. It’s a big job, and sometimes
it requires a sidekick, a sidekick on four legs. Steve Robinson:
This is Canine Spike. Look, Spike. He is an 8-year-old
Belgian Malinois. I’ve been his only
handler from day one. He’s trained in narcotics. During the duration
of our career, probably seized over
400 different seizures. [Narrator] CBP officials
like Steve identify high-risk
individuals trying to enter into the US, as well as drugs
and firearms. And because these
are such high stakes, dogs like Spike are
trained in a special way, in what’s called
“passive response,” meaning if they
sniff out drugs, they don’t scratch,
they don’t bark, and they don’t
make a scene. They sit. And if they’re right,
the dog gets rewarded. Robinson: His reward is
actually this toy right here. So he likes to play, so. Ain’t that right? You like to play!
You like to play! Yes you do! Yes you do! Let me see it! Let me see it! Here at the port,
we’ve caught up to 16 keys of ecstasy recently. [Narrator] Narcotics
are then seized and sent to be incinerated. The incinerator’s
location is kept a secret, as a matter of
national security. Now, pretty much
everyone knows that narcotics aren’t
allowed through US borders, but actually, drugs aren’t
the most commonly seized item at JFK. Food is. When a regular traveler
arrives in the US, they’re required to declare any food items
they’re bringing in, or face up to a $1,000
fine for the first offense. These items aren’t taken
because agents want to eat your yummy Spanish
ham or Caribbean mangos. It’s because
agents are responsible for protecting
American agriculture from any foreign
pests or diseases that could affect
our livestock or crops. And that’s where
agricultural specialists like Ginger come in. Ginger Perrone: Everything
gets destroyed to protect against
that pest risk. We are protecting the country’s
agricultural interests. We’re protecting
against bioterrorism, where someone
could intentionally try to bring in items to wreak havoc
in this country. [Narrator] Foreign bugs
hitchhiking in luggage have wreaked havoc
in the US before. Florida’s orange and
grapefruit growers lost $2.9 billion
from 2007 to 2014 thanks to the
Asian citrus psyllid. And since being introduced
into the US in the ’90s, the Asian
longhorned beetle has ravaged
hardwood trees. Eradication efforts
between 1997 and 2010 cost more than
$373 million. James Armstrong:
In our country, we go into
the grocery store and the food
is always there. We don’t have to
look at it for holes or check if it’s got
some disease on it. It always looks great, so
we get kind of spoiled, and we don’t
really understand the importance
of protecting that. [Narrator] So it’s
crucial that even a single stowaway orange is
found and confiscated. But with 34 million annual
international passengers to and from JFK, going
through each of those bags can seem pretty
impossible. For humans, that is. Luckily, they’ve got
a little help from the Beagle Brigade. This four-legged
officer is Biscuit, and like Spike, Biscuit is
trained in passive response. But Biscuit’s trained to sniff
out food rather than drugs. Sal DiSpigna:
They actually learn. They start out with
five target odors, and then over the
years he’ll expand, and they retire
with sometimes, like, 150 odors that they know. [Narrator] And Biscuit’s
pretty good at sniffing. These beagles have an estimated 90%
accuracy rate. Armstrong: Watching your
dog sit on three grapes in a Samsonite
hardside suitcase is just incredible. Scientists say their nose is 1,000
times stronger than ours. And they prove it
every single day. [Narrator] Once Biscuit
sniffs out an item, the passenger in question
and their bags go to Ginger, who will X-ray and
search the luggage. Perrone: OK, these are
both your bags, correct? OK, did you pack
everything yourselves? You packed your
bags yourself? OK. [Narrator] Ginger
unzips the bag and searches
each one by hand. And if she finds something
that’s not allowed, it’s seized and held
in temporary bins. Perrone: This is very
common from that region. Once you open it all up,
you have grape leaves. These are
horse-meat sausages. This is another very
good example of what we get
very frequently, especially in
the springtime: This is a plant that
they’re planning on bringing here to grow. So anything for
propagation has additional
entry requirements. So this is two families’
worth from one flight. [Narrator] JFK disposes
of the contraband food in one of two ways: the grinder, or
the incinerator. Ginger will bag up
the seized items and label them based on
their final destination. Perrone: So we’re gonna
go walk this bin, nice and full from those
two passengers, down to our
contraband room. [Narrator] This is the room where illicit food
meets its end. Perrone: This is our
grinding machine. This is what we’ll generally
use for fruits, vegetables, that kind of commodities. It is called the
“Muffin Monster.” [Narrator] But
before Ginger can send a piece of fruit
down the Muffin Monster, she cuts it open, squishes
it, and inspects it. She’s looking for
evidence of diseases, insertion points for insects,
and exit points for larvae. If she finds a little
bug, like this one, she neutralizes
the pest risk and sends it to the US
Department of Agriculture for further investigation. Now it’s back to
the Muffin Monster: 120 pounds of food
are grinded up each day from arriving
international passengers. Avocados, mangos,
and citrus are among the most
common fruits that end up in the grinder. Perrone: We do get messy. It’s important to
dispose of it properly. I love to eat, as much
as everybody else. I am a big fan of food. But I know the importance
of making sure that what we seized, because
of established risks, is disposed of properly to prevent it from
causing problems. [Narrator] So the next
time you’ve got an orange tucked into your luggage, declare it, and
let experts like Ginger decide if it’s admissible. And leave the serrano
ham in Spain, because Biscuit will find it.


  1. rebecca kim says:

    They should just donate the food to shelters and the homeless cheezus

  2. Jimin’s last jams says:

    Awww biscuit is soooooooooooooooooooooooo cute 😭🥰🥰🥰😍😍😍😍😍😘😘😘😘😘😘😘😘😘😘😘❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  3. Gumdur Godara says:

    Agricultural specialists like “ginger”.😂😂😂. The moment when you realise she was born to do it

  4. Nicolas A. says:

    After the Government of the United States decided to do an inside job like 9/11, the measures have changed.

  5. Paula Gendrano says:

    This is so funny. US is very strict to protect their agriculture against the world's pest when in fact cockcroaches themselves are originated in USA and now pest in Philippines. Thanks America! 🤦🏻‍♀️

  6. Nick Dinh says:

    That poor lady just trying to get her luggage at 2:00

  7. Never ever sober Need drugs for my composure says:

    Just ship all the food to Africa problem solved

  8. MG Hamilton says:

    Stop letting these people come into our country

  9. rajiv roy says:

    So basically you Americans are great at generating large volumes of waste

  10. Elementia David says:

    idk but that intro looks cool

  11. Adolf Hitler says:

    Children in Africa could've eat Ginger.

  12. Mr Heru says:

    Come on… Children in Africa and Asia can eat all that disposed food… 😌

  13. Steviemc007 says:

    What a waste of food

  14. Subham Debnath says:

    They can destroy the food but not cannot give it to the poor…………..

  15. well well Navarro says:

    Naaah ginger really eat that illegal goods u can already see it to her

  16. fonon mazda says:

    Who loves Ginger

  17. Mohammad Ahnafur Rahman says:

    Lol, 9/11 was USA's internal policy.

  18. izac manu says:

    Dog gang

  19. Beauty by Ashita says:

    Racist video

  20. Sigma says:

    The world : "millions of people die from hunger"
    Jfk : "nahh fam throw all the food in the muffin monster "

  21. Beef says:

    Wait, what if people allergic to dogs tho

  22. Stormy Vidz says:

    Doesn’t Ginger get offended if she sees some ginger in someone’s luggage?

  23. odd4sout Mapping says:

    The government has lost their damn mind

  24. kin says:

    I'm gonna bring food in my luggage just so i can see Biscuit and pet him

  25. dara jabar says:

    9/11 was an inside job. Stupid idiots wake up.

  26. Mike Woods says:

    Wel all the food is genetically modified to cause cancer in the body so they dont want you bringing in natural fruits and veggies to create food that wont kill you

  27. Satacombre says:

    I know someone who had apple in his hand luggage and nobody caught him at JFK…

  28. Nifty says:

    Agriculture Specialist? Eating everything doesn't make you a specialist.

  29. Brittany R says:

    I love seeing grown men baby talk these tough looking working dogs

  30. ジZNB says:

    Shouldn't Ginger be wearing a mask before dealing with the vegetables?

  31. Ramon Carreon II says:

    Why not give it to homeless people instead of destroying it ?

  32. NDZ says:

    That’s why there’s a crease in my airforces 5:11

  33. Lee Harvey Oswald says:

    This is stupid everyone knows there is mass amounts of theft going on by the TSA.

  34. Chon A says:

    Show me how you destroy illegal money.

  35. laurens minnaert says:

    why dont they just give the food to people who are hungry

  36. MrNobody The Second says:

    Oh god… I’ve been robbed….. someone held up the most dangerous thing ever and pointed at me…..IT WAS A BANANA…..I know……..Listen in Horror

  37. Migal Groenewald says:

    It's literally a sin to be named ginger

  38. Cam Hmar says:

    Here in India, a potato without blemishes is not a potato.

  39. Dejan Urukalo says:

    Show also how you put back on street all seized cokain.

  40. Beth C says:

    6:52 "are grinded up". Are you kidding me? "Are. Ground. Up."

  41. Shantanu Biradar says:

    What a great way to make up for food scarcity. People loose their lives because of not getting food. Thank You so much Customs & Border Control.

  42. Cfra123 says:

    What a waste

  43. Edward Herrera says:

    Its funny because the food in the U.S.A. is more contaminaded than any other country. How do u think the veggies are "so fresh" .pesticies people.

  44. Cody "U.S marine hyde" Cigar says:

    Propaganda insider

  45. night mare says:

    What about American Sunndi which has crashed our corps in asia

  46. S K says:

    That dog is amazing

  47. Michael Scalisi says:

    Bugs can cause more damage than me i guess

  48. Nargis Hossain says:

    Instead of destroying it send it back to the country its originally found in and give it to people who dont have food instead of destroying it

  49. Stubbz TheMan says:

    You’re telling me they dig through all my shit just to find some apples and oranges??

  50. Samuel Call uhia says:

    My dad always brings like 10 packs of brownies from America each year.

  51. BenDover 04me says:

    why are some people so confused about the food inspection and waste? did they watch the video or even know about invasive pests and diseases? or are they just dumb?

  52. TheBadGirlZ01 says:

    Full of shot most of the foods y’all consume comes from another countries

  53. Childish Gambino says:

    Haha I was going on vacay with my mom and when we returned back home to Canada, our before last stop was Toronto airport and I didn’t know that when we were on vacay she put spices in her luggage! We were getting our bags and saw police officers with dogs and I didn’t freak out until my mom told me that she had spices in it and it legit looks like weed lmao luckily we didn’t get caught I mean the dog looked like a K9 not sure how strong it’s sense of smell is but the spices wasn’t that noticeable in scent, it’s just something u can’t get from Canada so my mom got it from her home country to use in her cooking nothing to harm the agriculture with disease it’s legit a bag of spice, oh and I’m not sure what it’s called in English the spice so sorry if your were wondering lol

  54. Japux says:

    someone homeless watching this vid: 🤬🤤

  55. * MegaSkyWarrior * says:

    Loophole: Send food through the mail to ur home address.

  56. Krishna Chandra Das says:

    Men so much foods destroyed– yet United State have to shield itself. In Canada they dont care the pests will die during winter before colonization.

  57. Jacksonion Democracy says:

    I call total BS, they definitely consume the majority of the stuff they get – maybe not at work, but they r all taking little doggy bags of goodness home.

  58. Nihilistic says:

    Remember how in Karakuri Circus governments just allow Shiroganes to bring whaterver they want anywhere

  59. J Mad says:

    Any one who thinks the pest control is bs I have first hand experience with a blight that has affect citrus in California. it crazy how rampant things can spread.

  60. Shirokuma Otaku says:

    Great you telling me I can't go into the US with a pack of Haribos?

  61. Uce_AI_Muli says:

    They serve the horse meat on flights 🤣🤣

  62. CarpFoon 0'Hydrate says:

    If they take all the food and drinks out how will I survive The Forest when the plane crashes?

  63. Isnihaya Binumbaran says:

    They are doing so much extravagance. Millions of people dont have foods in their table.

  64. Arlojmikk Minecraft says:

    Just a reminder the term conspiracy theory was made up by the CIA after the assassination of JFK

  65. Ravioli Ravioli, give me a reason to live says:

    There must another solution to avoid the amount of food waste in that airport, composting perhaps?

  66. Heather Leonard says:

    ORRRR we could donate all that fresh produce to hungry people

  67. Doggie_ raps says:

    How else thinks the water where they wash it and it swirls looks so satisfying

  68. TheLordMemeGenerator says:

    America’s Logic: Food is illegal but well happily let a terrorist on our plane.

    Random Country’s Logic: Eliminate all terrorists, feed the passengers and let them have a good flight.

  69. Daryl Thomas says:

    Good thats what you shouldndo with all avocadoes even the non-ibfected ones 😛

  70. keyzzz says:

    thank god spike wasn’t around when i was😅😅

  71. Lord Grim says:

    Y'all talking about the fruit, but meanwhile I watch to see the gud bois

  72. Mahesh Mahe says:

    Bunch of stupids

  73. Thank You India Vlogs says:


  74. Steven Sanchez says:

    Did they admit that they juice the fruit and cook the meat? The grinder and incinerator respectively?

  75. CGGG1 Gg says:

    If I was her I would give it to animals

  76. Harvey ybiosa says:

    instead of destroying foods and fruits they should have given it on the homeless

  77. Abe Cruz says:

    So they’re doing it for interest groups?

  78. Matthew Roberts says:

    So if it’s a international flight food is not allowed but what about state to state flights?

  79. RF Arrow says:

    'Dangerous foods'


  80. tarek labban says:

    Gets thrown in jail*

    Inmate: I'm in for murdering and raping what about you?

    Inmate 2: I'm in for possession of fruit

  81. EliteHusky says:

    They better don't take my sausages from me!

  82. Ennis Parachki says:

    Millions of tons of food are wasted per year, but airport customs don't give a damn about that

  83. kazuki nakamura says:

    I dunno why but every time I’m on a flight in Asia I see them carrying on food. Are they worried they won’t have food in case of an airplane crash?

  84. Noah Katt says:

    Just give them to Africa :v

  85. schmelly beans says:

    “Dangerous foods”
    shows officers inspecting bananas

  86. Gary Hutchinson says:

    Kids in Africa could have eaten that ecstasy.

  87. Danknight gaming says:

    If they "inspect it" they cant give it back so what the point

  88. dj Lui says:

    That cancerous they be selling here

  89. plsfeedthepoor says:

    Ginger definitely eats some of that illegal food

  90. Mo Shak says:

    '''to not bring in drugs and weapons'' your country has the most drugs and weapon on earth…

  91. nhos says:

    Custom control: *puts weed in ‘narcotic incinerator’*

    “Shiet why the lights sound backwards”

  92. Liam S says:

    #delta agree 👍 or dont👎🏻

  93. Zain Chupacabra says:

    7:06 Pretty sure we could've inferred that Ginger.

  94. MannyRomero says:

    4:22 definitely not a chew toy in here

  95. Justin Long says:

    Livestock or crops. Literally two things. 🙁

  96. Hisoka Morou says:

    OMG Biscuit is so cute! ❤️

  97. Jericho Castil says:

    What if those foods are given to homeless people?

  98. chyu89 says:

    Didn't know terrorist attack with fruits.

  99. Cheryl R Leigh says:

    Since Ginger is one person and Biscuit is one dog there must be 1000s of suitcases that get through undetected.

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