This story in today's Chicago Tribune caught my eye because of the reference to El Museo de Jamón, which, to the uninitiated, is a restaurant and food shop, not a museum.  Though with ham that good, it is well described as a museum. :)

In general, APHIS permits select produce and meats into the U.S. from certain foreign lands, but Spanish swine is totally off limits. That's because Spain, unlike some other European countries, does not host a single slaughterhouse that has yet been certified by the USDA.

Virginia-based Spanish food importer Jonathan Harris, however, is working to change that. In an effort to decriminalize this ham habit, he's working with a Spanish meat outfit called Covap on a custom-built plant in Pozoblanco, Spain, that is due for inspection by the USDA this fall. If everything checks out, he hopes to import Jamon Iberico to the States by 2007 or 2008.
I'm mixed on whether this is a good thing.  There are just certain things about regional travel that I hope will never change -- Jamón Iberico being one of them.
Link: Chicago Tribune: How I got busted -- for harboring ham >

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