"The General state of the economy cannot but affect the state of the dairy industry as a whole. And first of all, the prospects for the economy concern the industry more than the pandemic", said Arkady Ponomarev in an interview with RBC.
The expert stressed that the consumption of dairy products has decreased due to the reduction of social programs – in particular, the closure of schools and kindergartens where dairy products were supplied
"In general, I see that the dairy industry is in a systemic crisis. This raises very serious concerns", said Arkady Ponomarev.
He reminded that the doctrine of food security defines the norms of consumption of dairy products. About 340-350 kg should be consumed according to medical standards.
"Today we consume no more than 250 kg. In three months, consumption has decreased, according to my estimates, by 4%", said Arkady Ponomarev. – "In addition, due to the increase in the exchange rate of the dollar and euro, the cost of domestic producers is growing. Electricity prices are rising. As a result, we have an increase in the cost of production and a decrease in the purchasing power of the population".
The MP stressed that as a result of these factors, the country is experiencing dairy food deflation.
"The price is reduced due to discounts in order to sell perishable products by any means. In many product categories, the industry is currently operating at a loss", said Arkady Ponomarev.
The expert noted that production records and a jump in the production of raw milk exacerbate the picture in the industry.
"The growth of milk production since the beginning of the year was 6-7%. They are right to talk about developing exports. Taking into account consumption, export is promising. Nevertheless, we need to understand that it will not be fast and it is necessary to supply special products of long-term storage. We need to supply high-margin knowledge-intensive products, the production technology of which has been perfected for years", concluded Arkady Ponomarev.