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Olympians missing their yogurt due to customs spat

Published On: Feb 07 2014 10:12:38 AM CST   Updated On: Feb 09 2014 10:42:56 AM CST
Chobani yogurt


American Olympians in Sochi are having to make do without their Greek yogurt as the 2014 Winter Olympics start thanks to a customs dispute.

Five thousand cups of Chobani Greek yogurt that were intended for the U.S. Olympic team are instead sitting in a climate-controlled warehouse in New Jersey because of a dispute between Russia and the U.S. over health standards the Russians want U.S. dairy products to meet, according to The Associated Press and The Washington Post.

This trade impasse has been the subject of negotiations for four years, and the yogurt simply got caught up in the politics, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul told the AP.

Chobani was hoping to get the yogurt in anyway, but Russia was still keeping the dairy treat out of its borders, according to the Washington Post. The company is still hoping for an exception that will allow its product to be shipped directly to Americans staying in Olympic Village.

The dairy spat has even prompted New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, whose state Chobani calls home, to step in. Schumer argued the yogurt should be allowed since it was meant solely for consumption by American citizens and not for general sale.

"Chobani Yogurt is safe, nutritious and delicious and the Russian authorities should get past 'nyet' and let this prime sponsor of the U.S. Olympic Team deliver their protein-packed food to our athletes," Schumer said in a statement on his website.

The Russian Embassy in Washington fired back, saying the U.S. has yet to fill out the paperwork that would allow for such an exception, according to The Washington Post.