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MOSCOW, January 15. /TASS/. Russia has confirmed that a cargo of US-manufactured foods for the International Space Station (ISS), stalled at the Russian Customs, is not critically important and the delayed clearance will by no means affect the normal operation of the ISS. A NASA official in Russia said, for his part, that the US foods had been ordered by Russian cosmonauts, and not their US or European counterparts.
“It is true that the cargo of US foods, to be sent to the ISS, has not been through the Customs yet,” the spokesperson for the space rocket corporation Energia, Irina Romanova, told TASS. “But this will create no problems for the crew. Firstly, the food reserve available on the ISS is large enough. Secondly, we are certain that the issue will be settled in the routine mode in the near future.”
Earlier, some media said that foods meant for US astronauts had been stalled at the Russian Customs.
However, the director of NASA’s manned space flights program in Russia, Sean Fuller, said that none of the food items in the batch awaiting customs clearance was addressed to US or European astronauts.
“The US-produced foods are for the Russian segment,” he told TASS.
Fuller explained that the United States late last year dispatched a cargo of meals requested by Russian cosmonauts. A Russian cargo spacecraft Progress is scheduled to be launched to the ISS in February.
“Our Russian colleagues like to have American food for a change once in a while,” Fuller said without mentioning what items the Russian crewmembers had ordered.
“We provide the basic space food rations for the Russian crew, but each cosmonaut is free to order up to 12 extra bonus rations of foreign manufacture. We do not know what they have ordered this time,” said the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medical and Biological Problems, which is responsible for providing food supplies for the Russian crew of the ISS.