Bayer has announced it is ceasing all business activities “not related to supplying essential products in health and agriculture” in Russia and Belarus.

The farm input and pharmaceutical manufacturer said that ending normal trade with these countries was in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Essential products, such as seed and medicines, will still be delivered by Bayer into Russia and Belarus, the company has confirmed.

This decision was made with the reasoning that stopping the supply of agricultural inputs would exacerbate global food security and increase the suffering caused by the war.

“Withholding essential health and agriculture products from the civilian populations – like cancer or cardiovascular treatments, health products for pregnant women and children as well as seeds to grow food – would only multiply the war’s ongoing toll on human life,” Bayer said on Monday.

Non-essential activities

Bayer listed some of its business activities that would be ceased in Russia and Belarus in its statement.

These included the suspension of all advertising and the halting of capital investment projects indefinitely.

The company also declared that it would not pursue “any new business opportunities” in the two states mentioned.

Bayer stated that it had established a €3m disaster relief fund to assist Ukrainians in the aftermath of the invasion, adding that its “seeds and agricultural inputs stand ready for the planting season for farmers in Ukraine”.