The Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance of the Russian Federation (Rosselhoznadzor) has announced that it is banning the import of fruits and vegetables from the Republic of Moldova, effective December 4.
Rosselhoznadzor claims that this move reinstates restrictions imposed two years ago due to an unfavorable phytosanitary situation in Moldova.
“In 2022, against the backdrop of an unfavorable phytosanitary situation in the Republic of Moldova, restrictions were imposed on all imports of products subject to quarantine,” stated the Russian phytosanitary service.
Rosselhoznadzor explained that the bans were implemented because several quarantine objects were found in Moldovan vegetables and fruits.
The institution also alleges that the National Agency for Food Safety (ANSA) did not respond to reports of these violations and did not take “effective measures to prevent the delivery of infested products.”
On the other hand, ANSA states that it has provided laboratory reports to Rosselhoznadzor demonstrating the absence of pests in batches of fruits and vegetables.
“In the last two months alone, ANSA has received eight notifications from Russian authorities, three of which were received between November 24 and 29. ANSA has responded to all of them. The last three are under examination and, as soon as the laboratory results arrive, official responses will be provided,” the authority’s statement says.
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ANSA specifies that it was not informed by the Russian phytosanitary service about this ban. According to the statement, Moldovan fruits and vegetables are exported to over 80 countries worldwide, and only Russia has reported violations.
“The decision of the Russian authorities contradicts international phytosanitary principles and is not based on any real arguments. The Russian embargo has no connection to the quality of Moldovan products,” declares ANSA.
Russia banned the import of vegetables and fruits from Moldova on August 15, 2022, citing the detection of harmful organisms in these products, marking the third embargo of this kind.
On October 7, 2022, after negotiations with the former Shor Party, Russia allowed the import of Moldovan fruits and vegetables for only three companies in the Orhei district.
Subsequently, the Russian Federation lifted the embargo for companies from several regions of the country, including the municipalities of Chisinau and Balti, as well as from the Gagauz Autonomous Region.