I just read this article on Russian officials destroying contraband food illegally smuggled into the country:
Authorities earlier this month started bulldozing piles of cheese, peaches and even frozen geese after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the destruction of food smuggled into the country illegally.
Now police in the Moscow region say they have arrested six people for producing cheese worth some $30 million (27 million euros) with banned Western rennet, a substance containing enzymes used for cheese production.
Authorities “foiled the activities of an organised international criminal gang in the Moscow region whose members have for a long time been engaged in smuggling sanctioned products from abroad,” police spokeswoman Yelena Alekseeva said in a statement.
My first thought was WTF?! All that food could have helped feed many of the Russian citizens living in poverty. My second thought was “an international criminal gang that smuggles in food? What’s bad about that?”Those were still my thoughts even after I considered that maybe officials feared the food wasn’t inspected. After all, why couldn’t they simply inspect it? So I thought maybe there was some other reason-a really good one-to destroy that food. After all, the number of Russians living in poverty reached 16.1 million last year. I imagine all that food could have been of great use to many of them. I found this article by Russian political analyst Andrew Korybko which attempts to explain and justify the actions of the Russian government: