Amazon ends foreign seeds sales in US amid mystery packages
© ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon is banning foreign sales of seeds in the U.S. after thousands of American reported receiving unsolicited packages of seeds postmarked from China, the Wall Street Journal first reported.  

“Moving forward, we are only permitting the sale of seeds by sellers who are based in the U.S.,” the company said in a statement Saturday.

The policy change reportedly took place Wednesday but was not announced until Saturday. 

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The Department of Agriculture (USDA) has investigated the origins of the seeds and urged people not to plant them. They’ve identified over a dozen plant species being sent, from morning glories to mustard.

Osama El-Lissy, a deputy administrator for the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), said in an update Aug. 11 that no major problems were found with the seeds and that the agency is working with China to investigate their origin.

The USDA has said the seeds are likely part of a so-called "brushing scam," which is when sellers send unsolicited items then post false customer reviews to boost sales.