Russia Moves to Toughen GMO Food Sanctions, Introduces Fines for Vague Labeling

By Heather Callaghan

Close on the heels of  their new food import bans, Russia is enacting stricter methods to keep GMOs off the table.

Russia has a consumer safety watchdog group called Rospotrebnadzor – also known as the Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Protection and Welfare.

Russia’s Government Legislative Commission has just approved Rospotrebnadzor’s proposal to further toughen sanctions and for the introduction of fines for unclear or inappropriately labeled genetically modified food, RIA Novosti reported on Tuesday.

The goal of the bill is to protect consumer rights and safeguard citizens’ health.

According to RIA Novosti, the statement reads:

Administrative sanctions will follow the breach of requirements concerning the marking of genetically modified food products or foods that contain genetically modified organisms.

Bigger companies are to be held to a higher standard for a breach than individuals. Individuals’ fines can range from 20,000 to 50,000 rubles ($550 to $1,400). Companies can expect to pay between 100,000 to 150,000 rubles ($2,800 to $4,160).

Sustainable Pulse reports:

President Putin earlier said that Russia must protect its citizens from overconsumption of products containing genetically modified organisms. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev followed this with a statement that Russia has no intention to import GMOs. 

Russian Minister of Agriculture Nikolai Fyodorov believes that Russia must remain a GMO-free country. At a meeting of deputies representing rural areas organized by United Russia, he said that the government will not “poison their citizens.” 

In February, a group of senators from Russia’s Federation Council introduced a bill seeking to prohibit the distribution and import of products containing GMOs in Russia.

According to SP, an explanatory note attached to the February bill tells how due to extensive GMO cultivation restrictions, there are only 18 lines of GMO currently allowed on Russian soil and that around 60% of Russians are distrustful of GMOs.

In June it was reported that Russia called for the creation of an international watchdog agency to be vigilant about worldwide GMO produce turnover and to critique how eating GMOs would impact human health over the long run.

With food overhauls like this, it’s safe to say that Russia takes consumer health and food freedom seriously.

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Heather Callaghan is a natural health blogger and food freedom activist. You can see her work at NaturalBlaze.com and ActivistPost.com. Like at Facebook.

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