Norway Busts Butter Smugglers

Bootlegged butter selling for $40 a packet
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 20, 2011 5:00 AM CST
People line up for Danish butter on a street in Oslo.   (AP Photo/Berit Roald, Scanpix Norway)
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(Newser) – Norwegian authorities are cracking down on Swedes churning cash out of Norway's butter shortage. Enterprising bootleggers have been selling cross-border butter to Norwegians desperate to do their Christmas baking. The going rate? More than $40 per packet, the Telegraph reports. Two men with more than 500 pounds of butter in their van were busted by a police patrol after they had made just one delivery.

While some Swedes are cashing in, the Danes—long irked by Norwegian butter import tariffs of $2 a pound—are gleefully offering charity to their oil-rich neighbors: A Danish morning show handed out packets of butter on the streets of Oslo. Authorities at Norway's butter monopoly blame the shortage on bad weather and the popularity of a high-fat, Atkins-style diet, but the nation's angry and butter-less citizens accuse the monopoly of being arrogant and incompetent. (Read more butter stories.)

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