Russian Federation Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards

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The USDA Foreign Agricultural Service offices in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Vladivostok, Russia, prepared this report for U.S. exporters of domestic food and agricultural products. While the USDA offices in Russia took every possible care in preparing this report, information provided may not be completely accurate either because policies have changed since its preparation, or because clear and consistent information about these policies was not available. FAS Russia highly recommends that U.S. exporters verify the full set of import requirements with their foreign customers before any goods are shipped. They are normally the best equipped to research such matters with local authorities.

This report is an overview of both general and commodity-specific requirements of Russian Federation government agencies for imported foodstuffs.

Despite Russia’s ongoing preparation for WTO accession, agencies’ control over imported foodstuffs remains complicated and bureaucratic. Barriers to trade depend on the type of product, customs clearance location, importer’s status, and other non-transparent factors.

Russian government Resolution No. 159 (March 24, 2006) and Resolution 761 (September 28, 2009) provide Russia with avenues for not only applying international standards in lieu of divergent Russian regulations, but also the mandate to conduct a review of regulations which are divergent and correct them where they cannot be scientifically justified. However, in practice, Russia has taken no real steps forward in this regard. Recently, Russia has chosen to defer to the regulations of the Customs Union as the supreme authority for guidance, even though they remain its primary drivers of policy.

FAS Russia Staff