The website of the Ministry of Industry and Trade specifies that mandatory labeling can start from April 1, 2023.
“Mandatory labeling of beer and low-alcohol drinks will become possible thanks to the integration of the Unified State Automated Information System and the labeling information system. Therefore, Russian brewers will be able to register in the labeling system as participants in the turnover only if they are already connected to the Unified State Automated Information System,” the agency said on August 10. Also, from March 1, 2023, registration in the Chestny Znak system may become mandatory for brewers.
Almost 1,500 enterprises will fall under the new law, if it is adopted, of which 1,460 companies produce less than 3 thousand deciliters of beer, that is, most producers are not major market players.
Alexei Nebolsin , a member of the Presidium of Opora Rossii, told Novye Izvestia that Opora Rossii would send its consolidated opinion on this issue to the agency. The organization does not agree with the timing of the introduction of labeling, nor with the very idea of introducing labeling in the segment where the EGAIS system works effectively.
“Small brewing needs to survive now. They, unlike the multinational companies that agreed to these terms, do not have annual stocks of hops and malt. We are already recording the closure of small breweries due to lack of raw materials. We warn in advance that attempts to refer to the majority of the market, which is represented by three multinational companies that have agreed to these terms, will categorically not suit Opor Rossii," Nebolsin specified.
Novye Izvestia reported that the market participants themselves reacted sharply to the Cabinet's initiative. According to their estimates, with mandatory labeling, beer production in Russia will decrease by 20-30%.
Daniil Briman clarified in an interview with Novye Izvestia that the introduction of the labeling system as a whole for the entire industry would cost tens of billions of rubles. At the same time, the key units and components of the marking system are produced in the USA, Germany, Italy, and Japan. Briman also noted that the marking will duplicate the Unified State Automated Information System.
The representative of the craft beer market, co-founder of the craft brewery Sergey Zakharov has publicly stated that the government's initiative could lead to the closure of small breweries. “Beer inside a can will not get any better from this label. I also understand when there is a product that is easy to fake - this is strong alcohol, vodka, cognac. Beer is not made from powder, it is a process that requires fermentation, fermentation and so on, so there is no fake beer. So there are no positive moments for the industry. Moreover, it is likely that a number of small breweries will close, because they will not be able to increase costs due to labeling,” Sergey Zakharov said.