MOSCOW, July 28. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) said that from Monday, July 28, it starts inspecting foreign suppliers of cheese to the Russian branch of the US-headquartered McDonald’s fast food chain to check whether their products contain antibiotics.
The watchdog’s chief, Sergei Dankvert, said the check could take two to three weeks. “Should we reveal anything, we will be considering relevant measures,” he said.
“The company receives some of its supplies from Schreiber company [Germany]. Brie cheese nuggets come from a Czech supplier,” McDonald’s representative Svetlana Polyakova told ITAR-TASS.
Polyakova said foreign cheeses and cheese products account for some 20% of the chain’s needs in Russia. The key supplier of these products for McDonald’s Russia [80%] is Hochland Russland, a Russian subsidiary of German cheese manufacturer Hochland.
Russian consumer rights watchdog Rospotrebnadzor is currently considering the option to check the entire chain of McDonald’s restaurants in Russia.
Rosselkhoznadzor told the Rossiyskaya Gazeta government daily that it will inspect not only cheese but also other products used by McDonald’s.
The check followed a great number of complaints received by Rosselkhoznadzor about the quality of products supplied to McDonald’s, Alexey Alexeyenko, an aide to the agricultural watchdog head, told the paper.
“Antibiotics are the key reason for checks. But we will also check products for microbial contamination,” he said.
Last week, Rospotrebnadzor said it had complaints about McDonald’s food. The watchdog’s department in Russia’s northwestern Novgorod Region filed a lawsuit against the company.
Inspections held in two cafes revealed that information stated about many products, in particular, the protein, fat and carbohydrate content, was untrue. Besides, some undesired bacteria were discovered in food offered by McDonald’s.