Russia has refused to allow almost a ton of German and U.S.
tea into the country, with customs officials saying the produce violated
Moscow's ban on Western food imports.
After 970 kilograms of German herbal tea was detained Friday
in the Siberian region of Novosibirsk, officials said Monday that they
had seized a smaller shipment of tea and ice-drink mixes on the far
eastern island of Sakhalin, the Interfax news agency reported.
About 28 kilograms of tea produced by a U.S. company was
part of the cargo aboard a ship arriving from the South Korean port
of Busan, the Sakhalin region's customs service was quoted as saying
A firm that was supposed to receive the cargo confirmed that
the tea originated from the U.S. but said that it was included in the
shipment in error and would be "urgently" sent back, the statement said.
The incident followed the seizure of German herbal tea
in Novosibirsk that contained slices of dried apples, pineapple,
currants and rose hips, according to a statement posted Friday on the
regional customs service website.
In August, Moscow banned imports of fruit, vegetables, meat,
fish and dairy from the EU, the U.S., Norway, Canada and Australia
in response to Western sanctions against Russia over its policy
"This product will not make it to store shelves," the
regional customs service said in the statement, adding the Novosibirsk
trading company that carried the cargo would "either have to take it
back to Germany or destroy it on the territory of Russia."