(Reuters) – Russia is seeking suppliers of baby food and dairy packaging due to supply disruptions caused by Western sanctions imposed on Moscow, the country’s agriculture minister said on Wednesday. Dmitry Patrushev.
Russia is a major global agricultural producer, but the sanctions imposed by Western countries following the Ukrainian crisis have caused supply disruptions and prompted some foreign suppliers to leave the market.
“With regard to dairy products and baby food, I would like to highlight the following: in order to maintain the stability of this segment due to restrictions on the import of packaging and a number of ingredients for the production of baby food, we are working with the business community and the Ministry of Commerce to find opportunities to replace foreign packaging suppliers,” Patrushev told a government meeting.
Patrushev also said the Agriculture Ministry had proposed that the government set export quotas for sunflower oil to “maintain stability of the situation”.
Ukraine and Russia are the largest producers of sunflower oil in the world. India imports more than 90% of its sunflower oil, although sunflower oil accounts for 14% of its total edible oil imports.
Many Russians rushed to buy sugar, buckwheat and salt after sanctions weakened the ruble and pushed up food prices in late February-March.
Authorities have repeatedly told people there is no need to store groceries.
“Russia is completely self-sufficient in major foodstuffs. There are sufficient stocks in warehouses and distribution centers, which are constantly replenished,” Patrushev said.
“In general, the Russian agricultural industry is facing a significantly increased demand for food products,” he added.