Russia has dealt a huge blow to U.S. farmers, after banning all imports of U.S. soybeans and corn due to microbial and GMO contamination, the country’s food safety regulator Rosselkhoznadzor announced on Thursday. The ban will come in to place on February 15.
U.S soybean exports totaled over $156 million in 2013 and were continuing to rise fast in 2014 and 2015. U.S. corn exports to Russia on the other hand were relatively small – for example, from September 2013 to June 2014, Russia imported only 4,742 metric tons of U.S. corn.
“Restrictions will be imposed on imports starting from February 15,” Assistant Director of the Rosselkhoznadzor, Alexey Alekseenko, said Thursday, adding that “they (the US) have to establish a system to ensure safety of products imported to Russia.”
On Tuesday, Rosselkhoznadzor said it had reserved the right to ban imports of corn and soybeans from the United States.
At the end of the regulator said that it might ban imports of the US corn and soybeans due to contamination of products by quarantinable objects (microbial contamination) and the risk of delivery of GMO raw materials to Russia.