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Explosive butter prices in Norway could ignite a wave of butter smuggling from Sweden and elsewhere

Sunday, 11 December 2011
This year there has been intense shortage of Scandinavian butter and the shortage is still affecting Norway to a very high degree.

It has gone to the extent that Swedish butter is being offered there at prices in excess of Skr1000 a kilo, and a Russian has now been arrested on suspicion of butter smuggling on a large scale.

The Russian, residing in Germany, was busted last Friday with 90 kg of butter in his car.
Various retailers big and small are having it hard to deal with demand. Even the large dairy wholesaler, Tine can not promise that normal supply will come in until after the New Year.

Some online dealers are making brisk business and have the freedom to charge as much as hundreds of krona per kg. Industry and authorities have warned of desperate Norwegians demand can lead to exploitation and the purchase of poor quality in the run to Christmas when many want to carry various forms of backing.

“Food should be purchased from professional and secure merchant, not the private environments,” says a Norwegian Food Safety authority to the newspaper, VG.


The authority urge people not to buy butter products that are posted on line and related places but when people are desperate to prepare a great mail for Christmas; it would be hard to control such attitudes

More butter is said to be on the way to the Norwegian stores, but that would likely miss the big weekend. Wholesale Inventories is currently empty. The situation is being said to be normalize over the course of January, hopefully earlier.

Also in Sweden the butter shortage was a hot topic earlier this fall. But dairy companies have worked hard and increased imports from Denmark and Finland, according to Jonas Carlberg, director of the department of dairy policy in the trade association, Swedish Dairy Association.

Norway does not import according to him because “as we understand there is a very restrictive trade policy, bordering on protectionism. They have enormously high tariffs on food and to protect domestic production with very high tariffs, they have to control such imports”.

“Quotas, tariffs and red tape make it difficult for dairy companies to establish themselves in Norway,” he says.

The Swedish shortages occur occasionally because poor profitability has meant that dairy farmers thrown in the towel. Milk production drops always between September and March, and consumers have also begun to demand more of natural fats.

There was increasing demand for fat-rich products before July but in Sweden, the situation is calm now, according to Carlberg.

“We do not think there is any shortage in the Swedish market until Christmas, but it should be stable.”
By Scancomark.se Team

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