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Sandy wrote:How is the Lacey Act impacting importation of djembe drums out of West Africa?
As far as I can see, not at all. It simply doesn't apply.
The Lacey Act apparently requires the wood be sourced and harvested from a legal environmentally sustainable source. This has to be proven all the way through the supply chain, and the end importer carries the final responsibility, which can result in huge penalties and fines if found to be non-compliant.
That's not my understanding. As far as I can see
, it prohibits importation of trees that are taken in violation of foreign law that protects them. It also requires a timber import declaration that states the origin of the timber, species, and quantity. As far as I can see, the implementation of the 2009 amendment to the act currently only requires the declaration of raw timber
(logs and lumber), but not manufactured products. Currently, only hardwood from areas in sub-tropical Asia east of 60 degrees east longitude cannot be imported. (That covers Iran, Iraq, and the Middle East, Turkey, much of Russia, and so on.) But even from these areas, manufactured timber, such as kiln-dried timber, can be imported.
None of the traditional djembe woods
(and none of the commonly used substitute woods) are on the CITES listing of species
. In other words, there are no import restrictions on djembes or even the raw timber out which djembes are made.
When so many people in Guinea and Mali live in such extreme poverty and just trying to scrape by to feed their families day by day, and don't have access to reliable electricity, or computers for that matter, how do craftsman from these countries even know the Lacey Act exists, let alone how to comply?
They don't need to know that it exists and they and don't need to comply. The act is a US law which has no force in Africa.