EU potatoes are temporarily suspended from entering Russia

Russian plant-health authorities have banned imports of potatoes and seed potatoes from the EU with effect from 1 July.

The move is likely to hit Poland, Germany and the Netherlands hardest as all three trade heavily with Russia on both seed and ware potatoes.

Robert Burns, head of seed and exports at Potato Council told FPJ: “Talks are on-going with the Russian officials at European Commission level. The bottom line for our seed potato exports industry in the UK would be a loss of around 2,000 tonnes of seed exports to Russia annually, and in addition negligible levels of ware exports.”

The Russian plant health authority Rosselkhoznadzor wrote to Ladislav Miko, deputy director general at DG-Sanco the directorate-general for health at the European Commission, over the weekend pointing to instances of Dutch potatoes being found to contain golden nematode.

The Russian authority said in a statement: “Based on these facts the Rosselkhoznadzor deems that measures proposed by the European party and planned to be imposed from 1 August are not capable to prevent introduction of quarantine products non-compliant with Russian and international phytosanitary requirements to Russia… the Rosselkhoznadzor deems it necessary to impose temporary restrictions on export from the EU territory into Russia of seed and table potatoes from 1 July.”