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I will be going to Japan in a while and was planning to bring along Indian Basmati rice and Pulses (Dal) for my friends over there. The amounts will be for personal consumption only and not for resale or anything. I was wondering if this is legal and if I will have to declare it at customs. And if there is any additional procedure involved.

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Technically, agricultural but not highly.processed products like grains and pulses are supposed to be declared and you need to have a phytosanitary certificate:

http://www.au.emb-japan.go.jp/itpr_en/visa_quarantine_en.html

In practice, this sounds like an absurd amount of hassle and I'm not sure how you'd go about obtaining one, particularly in India; I'm also not sure if milled and commercially packed rice counts as "highly processed" , which is OK to import without paperwork.

In any case, Japanese inspections tend to concentrate on outright contraband like drugs. Even if your rice is spotted, it's highly unlikely you would face anything worse than confiscation if you're suitably apologetic ("I'm so sorry, I didn't know"). YMMV.

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