Food Industry

Food Industry


ALRUD is one of few Russian law firms, which specializes in providing legal support to manufacturers, importers and retailers of food and food commodities. ALRUD helps its clients, in the food industry, to deal with matters of regulatory, commercial, corporate, administrative and judicial nature, as well as issues related to antitrust compliance, distribution of advertisements and intellectual property.

The food industry in Russia is developing rapidly, and its regulatory framework features constant harmonization with legislation of the EU and the EAEU. Our expectation is that in the course of a large-scale state project, named “Regulatory Guillotine”, effective regulations, which are frequently archaic and excessive, will be abolished by 2021 and will be replaced by new Technical Regulations, GOSTs, and other up-to-date industry standards. Another notable trend is the mandatory digital-labeling marking of products, introduced in order to ensure their traceability and also to combat the circulation of low-quality products.

ALRUD’s food industry team is headed by ALRUD Senior Partner, one of co-founders of the firm – Maxim Alekseyev. Maxim is active member of the Food Lawyers’ Network, a highly-specialized international organization of food lawyers, uniting professionals from Europe, North and South America, Asia and Africa.

Our services

Regulatory matters

  • issues of confirming the compliance of goods with technical regulations, international and national standards;
  • issues of official registration of foodstuffs;
  • various regulatory requirements applicable to food products, including labelling, maintenance, etc.;
  • consultation on pricing, formalization of permits and licensing documentation;
  • requirements applicable to alcoholic beverages.

Commercial issues

  • distribution and wholesale agreements, agency contracts, transportation and logistics agreements;
  • agreements on manufacturing, packing and labelling;
  • import and export of food products;
  • advice on the consumer protection law, rules of retail sales, returns;
  • tenders and procurement procedures.

Corporate issues

  • M&A, deals involving selling and/or acquiring food companies;
  • legal audit of food companies;
  • corporate restructuring;
  • legal support to equity and debt financing;
  • creation and support to joint ventures, strategic alliances and consortia.

Antitrust regulation

  • transactions involving economic concentration;
  • cartels, abuse of dominant positions and unfair competition;
  • restructuring, regulatory initiatives, coordination of transactions, antitrust and other State investigations;
  • antitrust disputes in courts.

Intellectual property and advertising

  • advice on IP protection of brands and designs;
  • due diligence of IP rights;
  • building an IP portfolio for new products;
  • licensing, franchising agreements, and assignment agreements;
  • representing clients in Russian courts and Russian IP authority (Rospatent) including in the Chamber for Patent Disputes;
  • advertising and marketing of food, soft and alcohol beverages, dietary supplements.

Highlights of recent domestic and international work

One of the world’s largest manufacturers of coffee

advised on issues of import of different types of products, including certification, licensing, technical regulation, and other similar matters.

One of the leading energy drink manufacturers

advised on the requirements under Russian legislation, and as a leading counsel with respect to a number of CIS countries, regarding all regulatory requirements applicable to energy drinks.

International company – manufacturer of doughnuts and chain of coffee shops (the US)

advised on regulatory requirements regarding import of goods, in particular technical regulations, procedures and disclosure of information in respect to the goods to be imported.

The world leader engaged in plant biotechnology and sales of agricultural products

advised on issues of the import and registration of seeds and GMO products.

Leading Japanese company engaged in production and sales of non-alcoholic beverages

advised on entrance into the Russian market of trading beverages via vending machines.

One of the world-known alcohol manufacturers

advised on sponsorship contracts within one of the Russian car racing events. The advice included consultations with the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service on the issues of the options available to the client.

One of the leading international company in sports nutrition

helped regarding a possibility of distribution in Russia of food products through its B2C website.

International manufacturer of dairy products (France)

advised on acquisition of control over a number of Russian subsidiaries and provided of legal assistance with regard to obtaining the strategic and antitrust clearance of the transaction;

British multinational company engaged in sales of nutrition products

gave tax and legal advice, with regard to structuring business operations in Russia;

Manufacturer and exporter of dairy products (the Netherlands)

advised in a transaction on acquisition of a group of companies, involved in production and pre-packaging of cheese, in Moscow region. We advised on due diligence of the asset as well as on structuring of the transaction.

Transnational corporation engaged in food industry, manufacturer of non-alcoholic beverages and other nutrition products

advised on antitrust risks and legal consequences of the acquisition of Wimm-Bill-Dann.

Manufacturer of snacks and beverages (South Korea)

advised on a number of IP matters regarding its brand protection in Russia, as well as on tax issues related to its potential entrance into a license agreement, with a Russian manufacturer.

Multinational brewing and beverage company

advised on current regulation of alcohol advertisements in Russia, requirements of the Russian advertising law with respect to legal clearance of advertising materials, liability of advertiser and producer of advertising materials for violation of the Russian advertising legislation.

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