Cherkizovo expects import ban to boost business

Russia has banned agricultural imports from US, EU, Norway, Canada and Australia

Cherkizovo, a Russian meat producer, is predicting that a ban on agricultural imports from the West will have a positive effect on its business.

Meat, fish, dairy, fruit and vegetable imports from the U.S., EU, Norway, Canada and Australia have been banned by Russia in retaliation against sanctions over the Ukraine crisis.

“As these restrictions will most likely support meat prices at current levels, this will be favorable for the group’s financial performance,” it said in a statement.

Cherkizovo said in a Reuters report that it did not plan to increase production this year, but would watch the markets and devise a midterm strategy.

It said it expects a shortfall in the pork market because domestic producers only cover 70 percent of market needs. It said local farms could close that gap within the next two or three years, with state support. The country’s poultry market is almost fully supplied by local producers and the company does not expect the import ban to have a major impact on prices.

Russia’s poultry consumption is about 4 million tons per year, and its pork consumption is about 3.5 million tons per year. Annual import quotas are 360,000 tons for poultry and 430,000 tons for pork.