Illegal saw palmetto berry harvest leads to more than 15 arrests, hundreds of pounds recovered

Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:
saw palmetto berry
Arrests made in illegal saw palmetto berry harvest in Florida. CREDIT: INDIAN RIVER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

More than 15 arrests were made after authorities recovered hundreds of pounds of saw palmetto berries from illegal harvests.

According to the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office, thousands of these berries were crammed into more than six enormous bags recovered by law enforcement.

saw palmetto berry
Arrests made in an illegal harvest. CREDIT: INDIAN RIVER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

The arrests were made with the help of RSCO and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, working with the Sebastian Police Department.

These berries are an essential natural resource in Florida and are purported to have health benefits.

However, because these berries are sought by so many people, some resort to trespassing and stealing them from private property.

saw palmetto berry
CREDIT: Indian River County Sheriff’s Office

Harvesting season begins in August and ends in November.

Click here to learn more about saw palmetto berry harvesting from the Florida Department of Agriculture.

Click here to apply for a permit.

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