Officials in Mexico and the United States are discussing expanding a joint pilot inspection program aimed at reducing wait times for agricultural products at the border. The program has already been implemented at Port Laredo’s Colombia Solidarity International Bridge.
There, wait times have been reduced by an average of 3.5 hours, according to a release from Mexico’s Department of National Service of Health, Safety and Agrifood Quality (SENASICA).
“The program consists of transports that have the American security certification of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT), which cross Mexican customs without inspection, through the Free and Secure Trade (FAST), which allows the border crossing to decrease on average 3.5 hours,” according to the SENASICA release.
Officials with SENASICA announced other border crossings that could see expedited truck inspection times include points of entry in Tijuana, Mexicali, and Baja, CA; San Luis Rio Colorado-Nogales; Ciudad Juárez-El Paso; Reynosa-McAllen; and Nuevo Laredo-Laredo.
Freightwaves.com further quoted the SENASICA release: “Through the pilot program from Jan. 11 to Aug. 25, more than 23,000 tons of food (86% vegetables and 14% meats) have entered the U.S. through the FAST lane at Colombia bridge, Nuevo León, Mexico, and Laredo, Texas, in an average time of 1.5 to two hours, compared to the five or seven hours they register during a normal crossing.”