It’s 2020 and there’s been a bunch of weird stuff going about and the latest in a long line of weird occurrences is the fact that people around the world have been getting mysterious seeds delivered to their homes. Yup. The seeds, which are being delivered mostly to the US from China have all been falsely labelled as something else before being packaged and sent off.
According to reports, at least some of them were potentially harmful to US agriculture, including noxious weeds, plant diseases and even pests. That being said though, Amazon has had just about enough with the ambiguity of whats going on that they’ve decided to ban all sales of foreign plants and seeds in the US, regardless of whether or not its imports or sales inside the US by non citizens.
According to Amazon’s policy email sent to sellers, it’s an effort to “protect our customers and enhance the customer experience.” People selling on Amazon who are found to be in breach of the new rules could find themselves subject to penalties, which include having their accounts removed.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. This is some sort of attack by China. Or maybe you’re not thinking that. Regardless, both the US and China are working together to track down the source of the seeds. One of the theories being flaunted is that this is all part of a brushing scam. Brushing occurs when vendors pay people to order low priced products and write fake reviews to increase sales.
That being said, Amazon’s action to clamp down on this won’t mean squat if the people behind this switch to other services. The good news here is that Amazon is the biggest at what they do in the US and the fact that they’re taking action is a good sign.
Time will tell if these shipments are part of some organised attack on US soil or just part of some elaborate scam to increase sales. We’ll keep you updated as the story develops.