Seeds that sow concern on the planet: for the past few weeks, individuals have received bags of seeds that they have never ordered, often from China.
The phenomenon affects many countries, and similar cases have been reported in France, Canada, Israel or the United Kingdom.
According to the French Ministry of Agriculture, these seeds could prove to be "vectors of diseases not present on French territory or turn out to be invasive plants". A press release was released Thursday warning anyone who receives these seed packages "not to sow them".
At the end of July, unsolicited seed bags from China were received by private individuals
esThese seeds of unknown origin can be vectors of diseases not present in the territory 🇫🇷 or turn out to be invasive plantshttps: / /t.co/v5gddapOv5 pic.twitter.com/nEgbDhjfoo
In order to properly dispose of these seeds, the ministry indicates the steps to follow: place the seeds in a plastic bag and throw it tightly closed in the household garbage bin so that they can be destroyed.
In addition, he asks “for investigative purposes” to send photos of the shipment slips of the packaging and sachets containing the seeds to the address: email@example.com. This corresponds to the National Veterinary and Phytosanitary Investigations Brigade of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food.
Why send seeds to strangers?
The American health authorities have also multiplied the warnings. After analysis, the seeds received across the Atlantic would only be mint, cucumber, melon or flower seeds.
We have received reports of people receiving seeds from China that they did not order. If you receive them - don't plant them. Report to @USDA_APHIS at https://t.co/0U53rbAiHs pic.twitter.com/Y4yAKv5bk7- WA St Dept of Agr (@WSDAgov) July 24, 2020
For the American Department of Agriculture, these mailings to anonymous people resemble a technique called "brushing": highly developed in e-commerce, this scam aims to illegally collect favorable opinions for merchant sites. , but very easy.
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Indeed, many e-commerce sites do not allow you to give an opinion on a seller until the package has been received by the buyer. By sending a parcel without value, such as seeds, an accomplice buyer can leave a favorable opinion on the seller's site.
This sleight of hand allows platforms to multiply rave reviews as well as their number of orders, thus giving the illusion of being a reliable site.