- A passenger was fined about $1,870 for failing to declare breakfast sandwiches in their luggage.
- The fine was part of an Australian initiative to prevent an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.
- Agriculture minister Murray Watt said the food was confiscated, inspected, and destroyed.
A handful of breakfast sandwiches cost one traveler more than their flight.
An Australian airport fined a traveler 2,664 Australian dollars, or $1,874, after authorities found McDonald’s breakfast sandwiches in their luggage, CNN reported on Monday, citing a press release from Australia’s minister for agriculture, fisheries, and forestry.
Australian authorities did not respond to a request for comment from Insider made outside of local working hours ahead of publication.
The press release — also cited in local news reports — said a biosecurity-detector dog at Darwin International Airport last week identified two egg-and-sausage McMuffins and a ham croissant in the luggage of a passenger on a trip from Bali. The agriculture minister, Murray Watt, said the food was confiscated, inspected, and destroyed.
In late July, Australian authorities tightened security measures to address an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in Bali.
Australian authorities have said the virus can be carried on people’s clothing and in foods. The disease does not affect people but would pose a risk to livestock including cattle, sheep, goats, and pigs.
CNN’s report mentioned that experts have estimated that an outbreak in Australia could cost its economy $80 billion. On July 22, the nation instituted a penalty for travelers who fail to declare dairy and meat products.
“This fine is twice the cost of an airfare to Bali, but I have no sympathy for people who choose to disobey Australia’s strict biosecurity measures, and recent detections show you will be caught,” Watt said in the press release.