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Ecocertified reindeer meet & wild-grown products from Russian Arctic demanded for import in EU

This was confirmed by a working meeting of profile  experts from Russia, Germany and Switzerland focused on Russian-German cooperation in the Arkhangelsk region and the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District during the “Year of Germany in Russia: Sustainable Development and the Economy“. Bilateral cooperation in the field of organic production will improve the well-being of all parties involved. 

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                Germany, Switzerland and Austria have for years been the driving force behind organic agriculture in the European Union, with a particular focus on the health of the local population. “Given the lack of own production capacity in livestock farming, there is a growing demand for meat,” said Andrei Hodus, President of the NGO for the development of organic farming “Agrosophia” and General Director of Eco-Control Ltd. “The Arctic regions definitely have their clear advantages, speaking of the peculiarities of the industry. For example, wild berries grown in the Far North have a higher level of acidity compared to the same berries grown in the south. “The Nenets Laika – Russia’s Legacy” project has already enabled us to highlight the positive factors of ecological agriculture in northern reindeer husbandry in Yamal, i.e. free-range reindeer husbandry and natural fodder.

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                “The project of exporting properly certified organic products to Germany and Switzerland has a chance of success. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the federal organic seal of approval in Germany. According to the “Eco-Barometer”, a survey and opinion poll of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture of the Federal Republic of Germany in 2020, 50% of those surveyed regularly voted for it. This represents an increase of 8% compared to the previous year. 37% of the respondents buy organic products on a regular basis and 90% reported being prepared to buy such products at least once in a while. In Germany there is an increasing demand for organic and certified meat and sausage products: these are being bought”, reported Julia Berger, owner of elvee, member of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Munich and Upper Bavaria. “The pace of development of ‘bio’ products is increasing day by day,” she said.

                “The organic label is also growing in Switzerland and the organic industry has great potential, similar to Germany. Harmony between people and nature is deeply rooted in the philosophy and psychology of Swiss people, and they are particularly attentive to this,” said Natalia Thieme, founder and director of Narucon, a member of various working groups on initiatives to strengthen Russian-German trade and cultural relations and member of the Expert Council at the representative office of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Russia. 

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                “Cooperation on the creation of ecologically certified production in the Arkhangelsk region together with the Yamal reindeer breeders will create an attractive price offer for European consumers, both due to the quality of products and due to a competitive transport and logistics solution,” said Yan Turov, director of the Economic Programs Foundation and member of the Arkhangelsk and Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

                “We are successfully implementing taiga reindeer breeding projects in Yamal. We are interested in further cooperation with our colleagues from the Arkhangelsk region and sharing our positive experience, as the reindeer farms organized in the Arkhangelsk region in the future with the support of Yamal reindeer herders within the Nomadic Home project will be able to supply products of northern reindeer husbandry to the European market,” summed up Timur Akchurin, executive director of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District Reindeer Herders Union. 

From the “Arctic Partnerships” sources in Russia. Photo by Andrey Khodus, Russia.

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