Russia lifts ban on dairy products from Belarus

Photo: BELTA

The Russian food safety regulator Rosselkhoznadzor has lifted its ban on the import of some dairy products from Belarus. It has also approved a list of Belarusian suppliers who managed to prove the safety and quality of their products. Now the Belarusian dairy companies from the following cities are allowed to sell in Russia: Baranavicy, Liachavicy, Vaukavysk's Bellakt, Mazyr, Turau and Lida. The ban was effecteve from 6 June and affected dairy products in containers of more than 2.5 liters. The Russians said only the suppliers with the highest number of violations were 'blacklisted.'

Minsk reacted angrily, with Belarusian Agriculture Minister Leanid Zayats describing Russia's measures as unjustified because Belarusian foodstuffs were safe. Zayats suggested "Belarusian enterprises are being knocked out from the [Russian] market." The countries held bilateral talks on the 'milk war' in Moscow. Belarus and Russian presidents Aliaksandr Lukashenka and Vladzimir Putin also discussed the issue during the recent meeting in Minsk.

The Belarusian Agriculture Ministry told the state news agency BELTA the ban has been lifted from all of Belarusian dairy producers. The next round of talks is scheduled to take place on 27 June in Moscow.