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KIEV, April 4 (Itar-Tass) — Specialists from Russia’s consumer rights protection authority (Rospotrebnadzor) next week will inspect two of Ukrainian cheese producers who exports their products to Russia, the press service of the Ukrainian ministry of agrarian policy and food reported on Wednesday.
According to the press service, Russian specialists will check the production technology and cheese quality at the company Prometey, Chernigov region, and Piryatinsky cheese dairy, Poltava region. These two companies used to account for more than 60 percent of Ukraine’s cheese exports to Russia.
Apart from that, in line with earlier agreements, Russia’s consumer rights protection authorities and Ukraine’s ministry of agrarian policy and food will set up a joint working group that will be tasked to “settle all disputable issues.” The group will be entrusted to “complete inspections of enterprises, to harmonize technical standards, to ensure quality control of products and to choose certified laboratories that will be responsible for the quality of exported products.” According to Ukrainian Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food Nikolai Prisyazhnyuk, “it will simplify the system of control, will buildup mutual trust and will open the Russian market to Ukraine.”
“Our task is to waste no time to harmonize laws and bring food production to the level of the standards and technical requirements that are fixed in our agreements with other countries,” he said.
In late March, Russian specialists already inspected the company Gadyachsyr, the first from among seven Ukraine’s cheese makers whose products were banned in Russia.
On April 3, Ukraine’s Minister of Economic Development and Trade Petr Poroshenko told reporters that an agreement had been reached that Russia will lift restrictions on Ukrainan cheese imports after the shortcomings exposed in the inspection of Ukrainian cheese plants are eliminated. Apart from that, according to the minister, the Russian side said it was ready allow Ukraine to choose a laboratory to certify domestic dairy products by Russian standards.
Russia’s consumer rights protection authority banned imports and sales of dairy products made by seven Ukrainian companies, namely Prometey, Chernigov region; Piryatinsky cheese dairy and Gadyachsyr, Poltava region; Bashtansky cheese dairy, Nikolayev region; Lozovsky cheese dairy, Kharkov region; Khmelnitsky butter and cheese dairy, Khmelnitsky region; and Belle Shostka Ukraine, Sumy region.
According to the Ukrainian Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food, Ukraine annually exports 500 million U.S. dollar worth of cheese to Russia, and the latter is the largest market for Ukrainian-made cheese.