Australian Lamb Group suspends exports to Russia

By Georgi Gyton

- Last updated on GMT

The firm said it wants to send a strong message to Putin
The firm said it wants to send a strong message to Putin

Related tags Australia United nations Lamb

The Australian Lamb Group (ALG) has halted all exports of lamb and mutton to Russia in the wake of the MH17 plane tragedy.

The meat processor, based in Sunshine, Melbourne, took the stand after the Malaysian Airlines aircraft came down on Ukrainian soil on 17 July, killing all 298 passengers and crew on board, after it was believed to have been shot down by pro-Russian separatists.

The company said that although it currently had several orders in production which were destined for Russia, they would be redirected elsewhere.

John Verrall, managing director of ALG, said in a statement: "Australian Lamb Group wants to send a very strong message to the Russian President Mr Putin that we, as an Australian company will not abide the circumstances as they are currently unfolding with regard to the shooting down of flight MH17 and the recovery operations at the crash site."

He said the firm had been exporting to Russia for many years and has enjoyed a strong business relationship with its customers there, so the decision to terminate exports there was not made lightly, "and it does have repercussions for our business"​, but he said ALG believed it must stand-up for the Australians that lost their lives "at the hands of separatists reportedly armed and supported by President Putin".

"We want to support the work of the Australian Government and the United Nations Security Council as they seek an independent, impartial and thorough investigation of the events that resulted in the shooting down of MH17.

"Sometimes it is easier for businesses to do nothing and to go about their normal operations independent of external world and political events, but I feel strongly that business can lend support and weight to the work of our government in a very effective and practical manner."

He said that by suspending exports the Group was sending a strong message to Putin.

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