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OMSK, April 03. /ITAR-TASS/. The Central District Court of Omsk has temporarily closed a Siberian cheese factory for 40 days in the wake of a row over outrageous photos of some of its workers taking a milk bath, Russia’s state consumer rights watchdog said on Thursday.
“We had asked for the maximum suspension of 90 days,” Galina Gladkikh, the spokeswoman for Russia’s Federal Consumer Rights Protection and Human Health Control Service (Rospotrebnadzor) in the Omsk region, said. “Forty days are not enough to eliminate violations revealed by sanitary inspectors.”
Trade House Cheeses, a dairy producer in Omsk, about 1,600 miles east of Moscow, has been making cheese under the Syroyedovo and Adygeya brands since 2011.
At the end of March, one of its employees posted online photographs and video clips showing completely naked men swimming in a giant container of milk as part of their New Year’s Eve celebration. While still partly undressed, they then demonstrate cheese making in a clownish manner. The milk was eventually used to produce cheese. Tests of some samples of the product found that “the fatty acid profile has considerably changed.” Some cheeses from that bath appeared on supermarket shelves.
Rospotrebnadzor officials held an unscheduled inspection at the cheese factory and initiated court proceedings. Photographs and videos were sent to the Investigative Committee to launch a criminal investigation.