Valio returns to Russian baby food market

By Jim Cornall contact

- Last updated on GMT

Valio is re-entering the Russian infant formula market after 15 years, with new Valio Baby products already appearing in St. Petersburg stores. Pic: ©iStock/Anton_Sokolov
Valio is re-entering the Russian infant formula market after 15 years, with new Valio Baby products already appearing in St. Petersburg stores. Pic: ©iStock/Anton_Sokolov

Related tags: Baby food, Milk, Cheese, Russia

Valio has started exporting its baby food range to Russia again after an absence of 15 years.

The product range, made with Finnish milk, includes baby food that is not included in the Russian sanctions on groceries.

Valio exported infant formula products to Russia under the Tutteli brand until the early 2000s. The new infant formula products are returning to Russian stores under the Valio Baby brand.

“Russians see Valio as a manufacturer of high-quality dairy products,”​ Valio’s category manager Terhi Sinkko-Hynninen said.

Foreign baby food brands strong in Russia

In Russia, baby food is often sold in powdered form, whereas Finns are also used to ready-to-use baby meals. The first Valio Baby products to be launched in Russia will be powdered.

“Most of the baby food sold in Russia is imported from Europe,”​ Sinkko-Hynninen said.

“The market is highly competitive and large – over 30 times the size of the market in Finland. Our products have already reached shelves in the St. Petersburg area, and towards the end of the year, sales will begin in Moscow.”

Russian operations

The new Valio Baby range comprises three different products that meet all legislative requirements and have passed a two-phase baby food registration process in Russia.

Valio Baby products are made at Valio’s Lapinlahti factory, a food facility that was completed in 2014.

Valio’s Russian subsidiary, OOO Valio, is responsible for product sales, marketing and distribution in Russia. Valio has a processed cheese factory in Odintsovo, near Moscow, where it manufactures Valio Viola cheeses.

Valio also packages hard cheeses in Russia and produces fresh products through subcontractors. Valio products are mostly sold in the largest Russian cities.

Related topics: Markets, Nutritionals, Emerging Markets

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