Beer smuggling in Norway has exploded in recent years. Large amounts of the illegal beer are drunk by youth or russ (Norwegian School leavers).
‘I can confirm that beer smuggling has reached new and worrying heights. We made several major seizures in 2017,’ said senior consultant, Elisabeth Nettum, of the control department in the Customs Union to VG newspaper.
Beer seizures have more than doubled in the past 16 years, and Nettum is in no doubt that it is due to organised crime.
‘It’s not morally okay, but that supplied by organised crime is the most dangerous. It is very uncertain who is producing this beer, and under what conditions, and we warn young people, and others, against buying it,’ said Nettum.
Director of the Brewery and Beverage Association, Petter Nome, said smugglers reach this particular group of younger consumers.
‘It is an international billion kroner business that maintains cynical criminal networks, especially in Eastern Europe. And the last stop for the so-called beer and spirits are the Russ or youth in Oslo, or elsewhere’, said Nome.