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Johanns:Under 30 months is good enough for Japan

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Well-known member
Feb 10, 2005
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Southern Manitoba
USDA: Under-30-Mo Cattle Should Satisfy Japan BSE Fears

WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)--U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said Thursday that U.S. cattle younger than 30 months old should be good enough for safe beef trade with Japan, rejecting some of Japan's mad-cow concerns.

Currently, the U.S. has offered a special mad-cow disease testing concession to Japan, agreeing to ship U.S. beef only from cattle younger than 21 months old if Japan lifts its ban.

However, Johanns said he is hoping to raise the age restriction.

"The science is very, very clear that in animals under 30 months you just don't have a (mad-cow disease) problem," Johanns said in response to a question about whether he would push for Japan to open its market to U.S. beef from cattle younger than 30 months.

"The science is very, very clear here that this is a very safe product, so obviously we hope to continue to open up the marketplace," he said.

Earlier this month the U.S. government sent a document to Japan's Food Safety Commission urging "Japan to move even further toward harmonization with international practice by raising the minimum age limit for (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) testing" to younger than 30 months old.

Such a shift, U.S. industry analysts agree, would allow the U.S. to ship more beef to Japan when the country eventually eases its ban on U.S. beef.

Johanns said Thursday that the USDA "feels very strongly that science is on our side."

U.S. and Japanese negotiators released what they called "a framework agreement" in October 2004 to lift the Japanese ban on U.S. beef so long as it came from cattle younger than 21 months old.

But that was a special concession the U.S. made only for Japan. The USDA is agreeing to certify that beef shipments to other importing countries will come from cattle younger than 30 months old.

Taiwan recently agreed to lift its ban on U.S. beef from cattle younger than 30 months of age, and USDA is negotiating to get South Korea to do the same.

However, Japan has alleged that it detected mad-cow disease in two cows younger than 30 months old.

The U.S., in the document sent to Japan's Food Safety Commission this month, questioned Japanese science that showed the two cows - 21 and 23 months old -contracted mad-cow disease.

"It is important to point out ... that the international scientific community has not confirmed these findings," the U.S. said in the document and urged Japan to share its scientific data on the cows.
TALK about being MISINFORMED ,the sec. needs to be Re-educated and not to read from some old script of 1996 news and research.Where is he getting his speeches or who is writing them.SH? Somebody needs to send to his office updated info from here!!!!!!!!!!!

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