Lawmakers vow not to let Russia's financial crisis dampen their consumption of black caviar
It's been tough times for the Russian economy lately, but the rugged lawmakers in the State Duma and Federation Council are soldiering on, as best they can. While millions of people across the country tighten their belts and struggle to make ends meet, the men and women of Russia's parliament bravely decided against reducing purchases of black caviar, according to Russian Caviar House, the government's supplier.
Representatives of Russian Caviar House told the news agency TASS that the economic recession has really only hit consumers who “buy products valued at under $100.” Wealthier segments of Russian society, the company told TASS, are far less affected by the financial crisis. In fact, the company says it's actually fielding more orders now than before, and it's even increased the size of its staff to manage the growing business.
It's unclear from comments by Russian Caviar House's representatives, however, if its black caviar was ordered for the parliament's cafeteria, where customers must pay for their food, or for official events, where the government foots the bill.
Russian Caviar House says it produces 23-24 metric tons of caviar every year, and it soon plans to start exporting its product to China. In Russia today, 50 grams (less than 2 ounces) of black caviar costs a little less than 3,000 rubles ($45).
The average monthly salary of a State Duma deputy is slightly more than 300,000 rubles ($4,500), and staff workers in the Duma earn roughly six times less, according to the newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets.