My farm – Russian vegetables enter Lithuania

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Asociativi manūkis.lt photo.

Vilnius. As the country’s vegetable growers claim that cucumbers and tomatoes grown in Russia enter Lithuania through Belarus and Poland by falsifying their origin documents, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture says that this would be prevented by the limited importation of these products into the European Union (EU).

“The main problem is to prevent those goods from entering the European Union. There is already free movement of goods within the European Union and it is already more difficult to control because there is no border control. Therefore, the main task is to limit the access of these goods to the common market”, Deputy Minister of Agriculture Vytenis Tomkus told LRT radio on Wednesday.

He reminded that in March, Lithuania, together with Latvia, Estonia, Poland and the Czech Republic, called on the European Commission (EC) to analyze the possibility of limiting the import of food products originating in Russia and Belarus to the Community.

The Lithuanian Greenhouse Association reported on Tuesday that Russian-grown vegetables, mainly cucumbers and tomatoes, are being smuggled into Lithuania through Belarus and Poland after falsified origin documents.

According to vegetable growers, such production is sold in Lithuania several times cheaper than local or grown in Poland and Latvia.

“Most of (Russian vegetables – BNS) arrived from Poland already with forged documents and possibly some of our businessmen do not even know that these are vegetables grown in the Russian Federation, because they arrive already with Polish documents”, Paulius Andriejavas, Chairman of the Board of the Lithuanian Greenhouse Association, told LRT radio on Tuesday.

The Lithuanian Greenhouse Association stated that it has applied to the Ministry of Agriculture with a request to take action to stop the import of produce from Russia.

“Even the photos presented in our letter, when the cucumbers are not even hidden, are packed in boxes on farms grown in the Russian Federation, where both the grower – Russia, the importer – a Belarusian company, and the exporter – Poland are even indicated,” Paulius Andriejavas explained.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture Vytenis Tomkus said that there was no direct import of cucumbers or tomatoes from Russia last year – mainly mushrooms, peas, and grain crops were imported from this country.

According to the vice-minister, last year the State Food and Veterinary Service conducted inspections of 245 trade entities and found 7 discrepancies in the labeling of food products, but there were no cucumbers or tomatoes among them.

Source: BNS

The article is in Lithuanian

Lithuania

Tags: farm Russian vegetables enter Lithuania

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