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Russia - New Zealand News
Russian door ‘not shut on New Zealand’ - Interview with Stuart Prior Print E-mail

Nigel Stirling, AgriHQ, New Zealand, 24 September 2013 - HOPE REMAINS: Former ambassador and diplomat Stuart prior says NZ still has friends in Moscow but few of them are in government circles, as was evident during Fonterra’s recent botulism scare. Photo: Mark Coote
Stuart Prior was New Zealand’s man in Moscow in the early 2000s. He was instrumental in getting Russia to the table for historic free-trade talks in 2010. He tells Nigel Stirling why those talks have hit a brick wall and why it’s NZ’s loss.

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Fonterra ban in Russia has been lifted, partially Print E-mail

Vedomosti.ru - 06.09.2013, Роспотребнадзор снял временные ограничения на импорт и продажу в России продукции новозеландской компании Fonterra, крупнейшего в мире экспортера молочных продуктов. Как сообщает сайт ведомства, это решение принято после анализа информации Министерства первичных отраслей Новой Зеландии, которую передало новозеландское посольство.

Анализы показали, что обнаруженные в белково-сывороточном концентрате Fonterra бактерии не являются опасными для жизни Clostridium botulinum, а относятся к условно-патогенным Clostridium sporogenes и не продуцируют ботулинический токсин. В конце августа об этом объявил новозеландский регулятор сельского хозяйства — министерство добывающей промышленности (MPI). Роспотребнадзор согласился с этими выводами и проинформировал о своем решении свои региональные управления и ФТС. Запрет на продукцию Fonterra был введен в начале августа 2013 г.

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Fonterra botulism crisis was false alarm Print E-mail


28 August 2013 The New Zealand Herald, The Ministry for Primary Industries said it had received results confirming that the bacteria found in the whey protein concentrate (WPC) manufactured by Fonterra was not the botulism-causing clostridium botulinum, the ministry said.

"The organism is confirmed as Clostridium sporogenes. It is therefore not capable of producing botulism causing toxins,'' the ministry said in a statement.

"There are no known food safety issues associated with Clostridium sporogenes, although at elevated levels certain strains may be associated with food spoilage,'' it said.

"When MPI received information from Fonterra on August 2 that it had detected Clostridium botulinum in some of its products, I immediately adopted a precautionary approach to protect consumers both here and overseas,'' acting director-general Scott Gallacher said in a statement.

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New Zealand ministers - update on Russia trade Print E-mail

Tim Groser, Nathan Guy

14 August, 2013 - Update on Russia trade - Trade Minister Tim Groser and Primary Industries Nathan Guy say that officials are working closely with Russian authorities to provide the reassurance they need over New Zealand dairy products.

“Russia has formally notified New Zealand of a temporary restriction of dairy imports from 61 of the 83 dairy plants approved for export to Russia,” says Mr Groser.

“Overnight, New Zealand officials in Moscow have confirmed that the restriction is now also being applied by Kazakhstan and Belarus. As the three countries are in a Customs Union, this is not unexpected.”

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Work needs to be done on Russian relations - ex diplomat Print E-mail

15 August 2013 Radio NZ - A trade advisor says the New Zealand Government has some work to do to repair and improve the relationship with Russia following the damage done by the Fonterra botulism scare. Russia, along with Kazakhstan and Belarus, has suspended imports of Fonterra dairy products or ingredients from most of its facilities licenced to export there.

That's despite Fonterra's assurance that it has supplied none of the contaminated whey protein concentrate, or products containing it, to those markets. The reaction from those three countries is the toughest market response so far and goes beyond China's action, which is restricted to stopping imports of Fonterra whey protein concentrate and base powder.

Stuart Prior is a former ambassador to Moscow who runs a consultancy connecting businesses with that part of the world. He's also honorary consul for Belarus.

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New Zealander Adams wins 4th women's shot put gold at worlds in Russia Print E-mail

MOSCOW — Associated Press, 13 August 2013 - Olympic champion Valerie Adams of New Zealand won the shot put Monday, becoming the first woman to capture four straight individual titles at the world championships.

Adams won with a toss of 68 feet, 6 inches. She has now won 38 straight events and has won every major championship at least twice.

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Fonterra dairy products ban in Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan could cost $133m Print E-mail

August 13, 2013 Source: ONE News

A ban on Fonterra products by Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus following a contamination scare could cost the company tens of millions of dollars.

The dairy giant publicly announced on August 3 a product it produces for infant formula, beverages and animal feed - a concentrated whey product - was potentially contaminated with a bacteria linked to botulism.

Trade Minister Tim Groser's office today confirmed the three former Soviet states had banned all Fonterra dairy products, despite none of the potentially affected product being shipped there.

Dairy exports in the three countries are worth $133 million a year.

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Russia - New Zealand Video

To see the video report prepared with assistance of Prior Group on WW2 ties between Russia and New Zealand, Russian TV, please go to:

http://www.vesti.ru/videos?vid=298438

Russia - New Zealand Quotes

A country of inveterate, backwoods, thick-headed, egotistic philistines. (about New Zealand) Vladimir Lenin, 1909
Полагаю, мы все были рады покинуть Новую Зеландию. Неприятное место. Коренное население лишено наивной простоты... и большая часть британцев - просто отбросы общества. Чарльз Дарвин, 1860

Prior Group Market Reports

Russia - New Zealand History

Lieut. -Colonel H. C. Barclay, M.D., of Timaru, writing to the Christchurch Sun, says: — Arriving in Petrograd, after a tedious 22 days journey from Japan, I was anxious to waste no time, but to get to the front. At that time no reverses had be fallen the English or French troops, and the idea of my commission leading to an appointment in England among the army that was to be recruited had not occurred to me, and so I promptly offered myself as an army surgeon to the Russians, and was accepted as an operating surgeon, though of the language I knew nothing. Still, if they were game to take me, I was game to go. During the ten days of waiting I had some interesting, if not exciting, personal expediences. I had the honor of being, presented to the Empress - that is, the Dowager Empress, the mother of the present Tsar. It was at one of the summer palaces on the island of the Neva, on the borders of Petrograd. After some formal introduction to a baroness and one of the Princesses, the Empress came in. She was attired in black with a plain white collar and a pearl necklace, her hair dressed in ordinary English fashion. There was no difficulty in seeing at once the likeness to Queen Alexandra, whose sister she is, but she was not as tall, nor as impressive in appearanpe as I understand the late Queen of England to be. She was exceedingly gracious in manner and in speech, and spoke English like an English lady would. Among other things, she expressed her pleasure at seeing an Englishman with her troops, and when she spoke of  the Anglo-Russian alliance, the emotion behind the words was plainly visible to me. A TALISMAN. When I said  that while with her countrymen I hoped to do my duty faithfully and well she slipped a little present into my hand, saying, -"Keep this for my sake, and may it protect you." Then her Majesty looked me very straight in the face and paused - her eyes were moist “Thank God for the English alliance," – she said and raising her hand to my lips I kissed it, bowed, and she passed out. It needed no keen observer to be aware of the feeling at the back of words in themselves so simple. Needless, to say, the little gift was of the nature of an amulet, a religious token to be worn round the neck. Of her interest in my reasons for being in Russia at the time, and of her questions about New Zealand and Australia I need not write. Poverty Bay Herald, Volume XLI, Issue 13570, 23 December 1914, Page 2

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Stuart Prior, Honorary Consul for Belarus in New Zealand

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