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U.S. mulls accepting beef from Japan

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Feb 13, 2005
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U.S. mulls accepting beef from Japan
Wednesday, August 17, 2005, 2:36 PM

by Tom Steever

There is additional news concerning beef and border issues with Japan. But this time the roles are reversed.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says it is proposing lifting its ban on some beef imports from Japan, which has reported 20 of its own cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

In a proposed rule change, the U.S. would allow the importation of whole cuts of boneless beef derived from cattle, born, raised and slaughtered in Japan. That would be done with the provision that the country confirms it has implemented food safety measures.

In a story from Oster Dow Jones, USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service spokesman Jim Rogers said it is pivotal that Japan ensures that its industry remove all tissues, known as specified risk materials, from cattle that could carry the BSE infection.

Japan was once the largest foreign market for U.S. beef, but stopped imports after the USDA announced the first BSE discovery here in December of 2003.