World

Russia marks anniversary of its ban on Western food by launching destruction of contraband

  • In this photo taken on Wednesday, Aug.  5, 2015, John Kopiski, a British-born business executive who came to Moscow for a 3-day business trip and ended up staying for more than 20 years, controls the process of cheese making in a storage at his farm in Krutovo village, Vladimir region, about 220 kilometers (some 140 miles) east of Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Farmers like Kopiski backed the Kremlin ban on Western food, hoping to expand their production to fill the market niche which previously had been occupied by imported food. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    In this photo taken on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015, John Kopiski, a British-born business executive who came to Moscow for a 3-day business trip and ended up staying for more than 20 years, controls the process of cheese making in a storage at his farm in Krutovo village, Vladimir region, about 220 kilometers (some 140 miles) east of Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Farmers like Kopiski backed the Kremlin ban on Western food, hoping to expand their production to fill the market niche which previously had been occupied by imported food. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken on Wednesday, Aug.  5, 2015, a specialist controls the process of cheese making at John Kopiski's farm in Krutovo village, Vladimir region, about 220 kilometers (some 140 miles) east of Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Farmers like Kopiski backed the Kremlin ban on Western food, hoping to expand their production to fill the market niche which previously had been occupied by imported food. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    In this photo taken on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015, a specialist controls the process of cheese making at John Kopiski's farm in Krutovo village, Vladimir region, about 220 kilometers (some 140 miles) east of Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Farmers like Kopiski backed the Kremlin ban on Western food, hoping to expand their production to fill the market niche which previously had been occupied by imported food. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken on Tuesday, Aug.  4, 2015, a group of activists, members of “Eat the Russian food” movement, check food at a Moscow food store in Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Importers have found numerous loopholes to bypass the Kremlin’s ban on Western food, and pro-Kremlin activists have sought to help the government to catch illegal imports. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    In this photo taken on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015, a group of activists, members of “Eat the Russian food” movement, check food at a Moscow food store in Moscow, Russia. Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn. Importers have found numerous loopholes to bypass the Kremlin’s ban on Western food, and pro-Kremlin activists have sought to help the government to catch illegal imports. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

Russia has marked the one-year anniversary of its ban on Western agricultural products with an order to destroy contraband food, a move that has raised controversy amid the nation's economic downturn.

President Vladimir Putin's order to destroy the illegal imports underlines the Kremlin's determination to enforce the ban amid continuing tensions with the West over the Ukrainian crisis.

The national agricultural oversight agency, Rosselkhznadzor, said several shipments of banned imported products will be destroyed Thursday in the Urals' Orenburg region and Belgorod and Smolensk in western Russia.

Russia slapped a ban on many Western agricultural products on Aug. 6, 2014 in retaliation to the U.S. and EU sanctions over Moscow's annexation of Crimea and support for pro-Russian insurgents in Ukraine. Western sanctions helped drive Russia's economy into recession this year.