A Belgian air passenger has been forced to leave New Zealand after attempting to smuggle three sausages into Auckland.
Ministry for Primary Industries staff intercepted the sausages on Sunday after the passenger attempted to conceal them in a backpack when passing through biosecurity checks at Auckland Airport.
"One of our x-ray operators spotted the risk items. They turned out to be pork and salami sausages, both of which could have carried diseases with the potential to cause major harm to New Zealand agriculture," says MPI North passenger manager Craig Hughes.
The passenger was refused entry after admitting he intended to hide the sausages from biosecurity officials.
He was returning to New Zealand on a work visa and confessed he was aware of strict biosecurity requirements, says Mr Hughes.
"Working closely with Immigration New Zealand, we take a very hard line on international travellers that deliberately ignore our biosecurity rules," he warns.
"It is loud and clear that every arriving passenger is required to declare or dispose items that could pose biosecurity risk to New Zealand."