26 Feb 2024 19:33

Lithuania to check grain from Russia, several other countries for pesticides, lead, place of origin

VILNIUS. Feb 26 (Interfax/BNS) - Lithuania is tightening control over grain shipped from Russia, Belarus, Transdniestria, Abkhazia, and South Ossetia.

The Lithuanian Agriculture Ministry said in a statement that by its minister's order, all grains and products from them intended for food and feed coming from the mentioned sources will be stopped and examined for the presence of residues of pesticides, mycotoxins, and heavy metals (lead, cadmium).

Additionally, each wagon or vehicle will be inspected to determine the product's place of origin.

The tightened measures will apply both to products imported into Lithuania and exported in transit through the port of Klaipeda, it said.

As previously reported, the ministry intended to impose restrictions on imports of grain from Russia, while a complete ban on its imports was not considered.

Lithuanian farmers, who staged protests in January, urged the government to make a decision to restrict transit of Russian grain.

Last week, the parliament of neighboring Latvia temporarily banned imports of Russian and Belarusian agricultural products and feed. The ban will be in effect until mid-2025, but could be extended if necessary. Latvia believes that its initiative complements the overall European Union sanctions policy.