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Russia places heavy restrictions on GMO imports

As part of the government’s bid to remove genetically modified food from the Russian market, Russia has enacted a new law banning imports of GM feed and meat products.
Meat imports from the EU and the Ukraine are already banned, thanks to Russia’s ongoing food embargo, so GMO restrictions will only apply to feed shipments from these countries. Those nations unaffected by Russian food bans will have to ensure their meat and feed exports are GM free.
Rosselkhoznadzor, the Russian body in charge of ensuring the quality of food imports, banned feed imports from Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and France on 15 June 2016. The agency claimed to have discovered GM components in several shipments.
Similar bans were put in place against Ukrainian feed producer Katerinopolsky Elevator on June 22 after Rosselkhoznadzor said the company had been supplying GM feed to Russia.
These decisions have been followed by a new law, effective from July 4 2016, signed by President Putin, which fully bans imports of compound feed products containing GM ingredients for livestock. The law also bans the importing of GM animals. 
Imports of goods destined for scientific research are the only category exempt from this latest law.
While this move has been praised by several market participants according to Global Meat News, who claim this will bring order to the Russian market, concerns have been raised. Chiefly, a lack of sourcing guarantees.
“For a long time, Russian farmers opposed the use of GMOS, including their use for growing feed crops,” Olga Baschmachnikova, Deputy Director of the Association of Farms and Agricultural Cooperatives in Russia, told Global Meat News. “However, before the ban we were unable to track the appearance of GM products on the market.
“Many suppliers of seeds to Russia’s domestic market are large multination corporations, which use GMOs. Even if they write on the label that the seeds are GMO-free, we do not have any guarantee that this is actually true.”
Further legislation, aimed at tightening import controls and the use of any GM products, is expected to follow this law.
Click here to read more
Source: www.globalmeatnews.com 
Image: © Matthew Britton via flickr


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