Irish nutrition company Kerry Group has suspended its operations in Russia and Belarus following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Kerry, which opened a factory in the Moscow region in 2018, had previously scaled back operations in the country, but had continued to supply essential food, drink and pharmaceutical products to the local population.

However, the group announced today it will suspend all business in Russia and Belarus following “extensive consultation with stakeholders”.

“Kerry Group has continuously monitored the unfolding situation in Ukraine and we are horrified at the escalation of the humanitarian crisis,” it stated.

It said its suspension will be managed in an orderly manner, during which the company will continue to pay employees and fulfil its legal obligations.

Kerry had previously stated it would donate any profits from its Russian business to good causes in Ukraine, but had faced pressure from politicians to go further.

The group, in partnership with the World Food Programme, has made a donation of €250k to support relief work in Ukraine.