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I have couple of Indian friends in Netherlands who would like to have some cottage cheese or paneer (raw) from India. Can I carry around 500gms of it with me in my hand luggage or checkin bag?

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    @NRandhawa Please add an answer instead of a comment. – JoErNanO Jun 28 at 13:04
  • Luckily for your friends, paneer cheese is trivial to make at home. – Konrad Rudolph Jun 28 at 18:19
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The EU is quite strict about bringing foodstuffs in from outside the EU. The Dutch agency that administers this issue in the Netherlands has a webpage here. That page contains this text:

Animal products and foodstuffs

Do not import any animal products into the Netherlands from outside the EU. And also do not order them, for example, through the internet. In the EU strict requirements apply to the import of animal products and food. Examples: cheese, milk and milk products, eggs, meat, fresh or processed fishing products, skins, game trophies. Do you nevertheless still want to import animal products and food into the EU? Then you almost always need a health certificate.

The page goes on to discuss obtaining a health certificate from the food's country or origin, and says that even with a certificate the food will be "inspected by veterinary experts."

So unless you're willing to endure a lot of bureaucratic red tape, it appears that you'll not be permitted to bring cottage cheese or paneer from India, either in your hand luggage or in your hold luggage.

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    The worst that will happen (for household size samples) is that they'll destroy it. – pmf Jun 28 at 12:59
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    No, worse would be that the travelers took the cheese but didn't declare it to customs, the cheese was found and destroyed, and the travelers were punished for failing to declare it. – David Jun 28 at 14:06
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    @pmf: The worse that would happen is that the cheese goes through undetected and somehow spreads a new disease in the local wildlife, local pets or local humans. There's a reason for veterinary checks. – Matthieu M. Jun 28 at 14:14
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    @MatthieuM. ...and starts a war. Which aliens decide to intervene in. And it turns out they are susceptible to the disease, they catch it, and spread it to the other intelligent species in the galaxy, and the only solution is to eliminate ice cream from the galaxy completely. Which is to say, worst case==complete elimination of ice cream. So don't sneak around with your cottage cheese. – msouth Jun 28 at 22:02

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