Belfast Telegraph

Monday 28 July 2014

Yoghurt row hits US team in Sochi

Team USA sponsor Chobani says it has 5,000 cups of Greek yoghurt sitting in a refrigerated warehouse waiting to be flown to the Olympic village. (AP)

US Olympians are having to make do without the team's official yoghurt.

Some 5,000 cups of Greek yoghurt from sponsor Chobani is not getting to Sochi because of a customs dispute with Russia.

Authorities say the US Department of Agriculture has refused to provide a certificate that is required for dairy products under its customs rules.

A Department spokeswoman says the agency is working with its Russian counterpart to reach a solution to allow the Chobani shipment to go through despite the lack of agreement on general trade requirements for dairy products.

The lack of the yoghurt could deprive the team of a source of protein and disturb their daily routines as they prepare for the biggest competition of their lives.

US halfpipe skier Aaron Blunck said, to traveling athletes, getting food from home is part of feeling fit and healthy.

"And having the yogurt there, that helps you, gives you protein, gives you nutrition," he said.

But teammate Lyman Currier said part of being an elite athlete is dealing with the unexpected, "so whether we have our yogurt or not, we'll be able to adapt".

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