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MOSCOW, March 3. /TASS/. The net sales of the Finnish dairy producer Valio in Russia for 2014 dropped 36% to €258 million compared with the company’s forecast because of food embargo, Valio reported Tuesday.
"Valio Russia’s net sales for 2014 stood at around €258 million, which according to an estimate made in the summer would have exceeded €400 million under normal conditions," the report said.
Valio Group net sales for 2014 stood at €1,950 million, down 3.9% on the previous year. Net sales decreased by 9% in international markets and 0.8% in Finland, the company said.
"The favorable development of exports to Russia collapsed in early August due to the import embargo, and hundreds of millions of liters of milk had to be processed into industrial butter and milk powder for world markets, the prices of which were at a record low," the report said, adding that Valio was hit by far the hardest of all companies in Finland by Russia’s import restrictions.
The decrease in net sales and product profitability forced Valio to lower the price paid for raw milk to dairy cooperatives and reduce the number of personnel, the company said.
Russia accounted for around 37% of Valio exports in 2014.
Valio is the biggest Finnish supplier of dairy products to Russia, the company used to produce 90% of all products sold in Russia, in Finland. The company’s exports to Russia in 2013 exceeded €242 million, which is more than 85% of all Finland’s exports affected by Russia’s counter-sanctions.
On August 7, 2014 Russia imposed a one-year ban on imports of beef, pork, poultry, fish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables and dairy products from Australia, Canada, the European Union, the United States and Norway as a response to anti-Russia sanctions imposed by those countries.