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Beef News
Senators threaten Japan over beef ban; Japan discovers another BSE case

by Pete Hisey on 2/28/05 for Meatingplace.com



A letter signed by 20 U.S. senators, mainly from farm states, threatens retaliation if Japan does not lift its ban on U.S. beef products.

The letter, sent to Japanese Ambassador Ryozo Rato, said, "If the Japanese government fails to lift the ban expeditiously, we are afraid that the U.S. Congress may pursue equitable, retaliatory economic actions against Japan."

At roughly the same time that the letter was delivered to the embassy, Rato was no doubt reading about a 15th case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy discovered in Japan. Further tests are scheduled, but the animal, found dead on a farm, tested positive in initial tests. No further details were available as of Friday afternoon.

The import of American beef has become a political hot potato in Japan, where consumers have been reassured by the Japanese policy of testing every animal at slaughter to guarantee that BSE-infected meat is not entering the food supply. The death of a man in his early 50s of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in December has alarmed consumers. Philip Seng, chief executive of the U.S. Meat Export Federation, said that while Japanese consumers prefer American beef to the leaner, grass-fed Australian version, "BSE was just a blight on the meat industry" in Japan. Additionally, the issue gives Japanese opposition parties an issue with which to beat the ruling Liberal Democratic Party over the head.

To fend off charges later that the government was cavalier in reopening the market, or as the opposition phrases it, caved to American arm-twisting, the political end of the Japanese government is going to be "meticulous; they are going to look at every detail," Seng told Meatingplace.com.
 

Mike

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Would you care to expand on your title "Typical"? I told myself I was not going to respond to an unlogged poster, but you have my curiosity up.
 
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Anonymous

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Guest Say Senators Threathen Japan. That's the Typical response fron bullies,but in this case the value of life and health comes before a threat.Japan can keep the door closed as they have their own health regs.As I see it ,the onlyway in is to follow rules set by the import country.When beef has been tested for BSE(15.00 dollars) an animal then we have right's as a exporter.
 

don

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imagine the senators' blood pressure if mexico said they'll set the standards in their slaughter houses for meat exported to the states!!! gotta be impressed with their arrogance and blindness. this illustrates the stupidity of canada haveng usda and ncba in to give their blessing to our procedures when they are only half-hearted in their commitment to free trade. we'd be further ahead to deal with japan directly or china - now there's a growing market.
 
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Anonymous

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AMI don't know the prevalence of BSE and not knowing is bad for the cattle industry, North American and U.S. economies, and for public health and for consumers.Now they have LIED about Specific SRM's removeal per age Groups!
 

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