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Russia returns fire in dairy export battle with Ukraine

By Mark Astley+

07-Apr-2014

Russia returns fire in dairy export battle with Ukraine

Russia has suspended the import of products manufactured by six Ukrainian dairies following a similar ban on Russian-made Lactalis cheese.

The Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Welfare (Rospotrebnadzor/CPS) announced an import ban earlier today on dairy products manufactured by six Ukrainian firms, citing “breaches of the law in the area of consumer protection.”

“To ensure the rights of consumers, CPS has suspended imports into the Russian Federation of [six] Ukrainian dairy producers,” said the statement.

The move follows a similar ban by the Ukraine State Inspectorate for Consumer Protection (Derzhspozhyvinspektsiyeyu) on several cheese products manufactured by Lactalis Istra, the Russian subsidiary of French dairy giant Lactalis.

“Delivered with violations”

Derzhspozhyvinspektsiyeyu announced last week that it had “taken appropriate measures to remove” a variety of President brand sliced and cream cheeses - manufactured near Moscow - and “other Russian products” including chocolate, candy and canned fish.

The pulled products were “delivered with violations [to] hypermarkets and major retailers” in Ukraine, said the Derzhspozhyvinspektsiyeyu notice.

DairyReporter.com approached Lactalis for comment, but no response was received prior to publication.

The dairy manufacturer was one of several contacted by DairyReporter.com last month to gauge the impact of political uncertainty in Ukraine on their operations.

At the time, Lactalis “declined to make any comment on the situation.”

"Contrary to...international law"

Prior to today’s announced Ukrainian dairy ban, Rospotrebnadzor claimed that Ukraine had not informed it of the removal of Lactalis Istra products. 

“Contrary to the rules established by international law, Ukrainian control (supervisory) authorities have not informed CPS to undertake any activities related to the identification of Russian products [that] allegedly do not meet quality and safety requirements,” it said.

It added that its own examination of the recalled Lactalis products "did not reveal any discrepancies."

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