U.S., Canadian and EU enterprises will not be able to resume meat supplies to Russia after the food embargo is lifted because Rosselkhoznadzor intends to revise the guarantees provided by these countries' veterinary services earlier. A specific decision on the matter may be made on November 10.
"We analyzed the situation and came to the conclusion that we need to revise the guarantees provided by the veterinary services of the U.S., Canada and the EU before Russia had to impose the restrictions," Rosselkhoznadzor Director Sergei Dankvert told Interfax said.
Dankvert said the main problem with the safety guarantees provided by the U.S. is its poultry safety control.
According to earlier reports, a system according to which some state functions in the sphere of poultry safety control is given to private companies is put in place in the U.S. on October 24.
"Our American colleagues are properly informing us about the change, and therefore we believe that all guarantees that were issued earlier are invalid," Dankvert said, adding that Rosselkhoznadzor plans to hold consultations on this issue with the U.S. control services.
Revising the guarantees in this situation means a ban on the supply of poultry from the U.S. after the food embargo is lifted.
"We will have to impose a restriction on poultry supplies with subsequent inspections of the U.S. supplies by Russian veterinary specialists," Rosselkhoznadzor said.
As for the supplies from Canada, the problem is mainly with safety control in connection with the use of ractopamine in pork production. "We were assured that the guarantees are valid, but cases when ractopamine was found in Canadian pork [for the food embargo was imposed] indicate the opposite. This gives us the right to restrict its supply after the Russian embargo is lifted," Dankvert said.
Dankvert also said the Canadian Food Inspection, which earlier reported to the Agriculture Ministry, now reports to the Canadian Health Ministry. "The system of guarantees provided by this service is unclear to us," he said.
Dankvert said the restrictions may also apply to the import into Russia of seafood from Canada, specifically, shrimp. "We have enough facts of violations of the Russian requirements in the supply of these products. All these things indicate that the safety guarantees provided earlier are ineffective," he said.
Dankvert said there is a similar situation with the supply of meat from the EU. After the food embargo us lifted, only those enterprises that have been inspected by Russian veterinary inspectors will most likely stay on the list, he said. This is also due to the numerous violations of the veterinary requirements of Russia and the Customs Union, the absence of a system for tracking products and the smuggling of European meat to bypass the Russian embargo.
"They are trying to convince us that every piece of meat in Europe is under control, but no one can explain why fat from European counties has entered the Russian market on forged documents and how the European customs bodies 'help' turn pork into chewing gum, chewing marmalade, or concentrated juice," he said.
Dankvert said Rosselkhoznadzor will make specific decisions on these issues after November 10.
According to earlier reports, Russia banned the supply of some foods, including meat, from the U.S., Canada, the EU, Australia, and Norway on August 7 over the anti-Russia sanctions. The ban was imposed for one year.
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