The Russian president sources his caviar from the Italian sturgeon farm Agroittica Lombarda — producer of Calvisius caviar. Lelio Mondella, managing director of Agroittica, told Bloomberg that there was a catch in this deal with Russia, saying, “We’ve had to put a Russian brand name on the tin, and we don’t put ‘Made in Italy’ on it.”
Agroittica runs the largest sturgeon farm in Europe, which produces about 25 tons of caviar each year.
Russia turned to imported caviar because there are boundaries placed on overfishing wild sturgeons in the Caspian Sea.
“Rich and powerful Russians can’t do without it, so they have made an exception,” Mondella said. “The Russians want to eat Russian caviar. I understand that. Who would buy mozzarella cheese made in Russia?”