A berry landed nearly a dozen people in jail in Collier County.
Palmetto berries are believed to be a natural health remedy. However, picking them eats away at the food supply for bears, deer and other animals. Not to mention, it is illegal to pick these palmetto berries without a permit.
"People have families out here it helps them get food on the table," 35-year-old Javier Reza.
Reza said the recent arrests have raised concerns in Immokalee.
"Everybody is afraid right now," Reza said.
Thursday seven people were arrested for harvesting an endangered plant and earlier in the week three others were also arrested.
"When I was 13, I did it, I was out there too picking myself," Reza said. "Back then when I was young it was a little easier."
Now, times have changed.
The Florida Department of Agriculture added Saw Palmettos, the plant that produces Palmetto berries, to the list of commercially exploited plants back in July.
"We're not out looking for folks picking palmetto berries or stopping out with folks picking palmetto berries. We're answering calls for service," Martin said.
Lieutenant Gary Martin said picking palmetto berries can get you arrested.
"You just have to go to each individual property owners that you wish to pick palmetto berries on ask for written permission and then file for the permit," Martin said.
The FDA stated that the review of the application can take up to 14 days.
Reza said he's seen people make a $1,000-a-day picking those berries. The berries are being sold for nearly $1.25 a pound on the streets of Immokalee, and he understands why people do it.
"Kids… maybe trying to buy clothes for them.. school's going to start.. you don't know what conditions they are living in," Reza said. "Just to get arrested, they might not even have money to come out of jail."
If someone is found illegally harvesting them, the berries are returned back to the owner and if the owner can't be located they are destroyed.
To find more information on how to get a permit click here.