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Japan needs our beef?

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Bill

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BEEF NEWS
Bush set to discuss beef ban with Japan's prime minister

by John Gregerson on 11/16/2005 for Meatingplace.com

When President Bush meets with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi in the ancient capital of Kyoto Wednesday, he is expected to take up the long-simmering issue of Japan's two-year embargo of U.S. beef. Question is, will Bush leave the meeting with a promise — and a date — to resume commerce?

Remarks Tuesday by Japanese Trade Minister Toshihiro Nikai weren't encouraging. "U.S. beef will be accepted by the Japanese on the condition that consumers are willing to buy and eat it," Nikai told reporters after meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Portman. "It's wrong [of them] to drive in their idea through an aggressive negotiation."

In particular, Nikai criticized members of the U.S. Senate for threatening sanctions of $3.1 billion — the amount the U.S. beef industry says it lost in sales to Japan since 2004 — unless Tokyo lifts its ban by the end of the year. "I told the U.S. side, 'We are making an effort toward a decision, so please don't rush us.'"

While encouraged by recent progress made by Japan's Prion Committee, American Meat Institute CEO J. Patrick Boyle and National Cattlemen's Beef Association Terry Stokes indicated in a letter to Bush Tuesday that resumption of trade has "not been addressed in an expeditious nor immediate manner." The letter also noted that "cattle producers and beef processors are very concerned about the conditions of access to the Japanese market in the agreement … currently under review." Current estimates from USDA indicate the potentially eligible product that could meet Japan's requirements would be only 7 to 8 percent of current domestic production, substantially less than was previously marketed to Japanese consumers.

Demand may be low

However, based on polls of Japanese retailers and foodservice providers, demand may not reach the same level the U.S. beef industry previously enjoyed — at least not initially. In fact, a survey of major restaurant chains and supermarkets by the Nihon Keizai Shimbun newspaper found that U.S. beef sales to Japan would amount to only 10 percent to 20 percent of levels prior to the December 2003 ban.

The survey, published Monday, found that only 7 percent of the supermarkets and restaurants polled plan to buy U.S. beef within one or two months after imports resume. Another 52 percent indicated they would likely offer U.S. beef within six months after assessing safety and price, while 27 percent indicated they had no plans to buy U.S. beef for the time being.
 

Sandhusker

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".... American Meat Institute CEO J. Patrick Boyle and National Cattlemen's Beef Association Terry Stokes indicated in a letter to Bush...." What, these two guys are partnering on a project? When did this relationship start? :lol: :oops: :oops:
 

rkaiser

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Amazing that we say we listen to the Japanese but still cannot hear a word they are saying.

And my words are especially for AMI, NCBA, USDA led CCA. Canada has an opportuntiy here like there has never been in the history of the export beef business. Test our beef for Japan, avoid the value adding that has been happening in the past in the US plants, and get on with it.

Amazing is the only word for it. And yet we are to beleive that the mutinational packer only operate in the free enterprise system with no reliance on government for help. :roll:
 

mp.freelance

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What's weird is that I've read there might be a market in Japan for cheaper Kobe beef, produced from U.S. angus crossbred with Wagyu. Some ranch in Idaho was already doing it (before the ban), making $40 a pound.
 

agman

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mp.freelance said:
What's weird is that I've read there might be a market in Japan for cheaper Kobe beef, produced from U.S. angus crossbred with Wagyu. Some ranch in Idaho was already doing it (before the ban), making $40 a pound.

There has been a market for such beef for many years. Most of these cattle are fed to 1600 plus pounds in the U.S. What you read is correct.
 

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