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Japan to Ease Restrictions on U.S. Beef Imports Next Month

Japan to Allow U.S Beef Cattle Up to 30-Months Old

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Japan announced that it will be relaxing restrictions on U.S. beef imports starting Feb. 1, 2013 - after authorities said that the change wouldn’t pose health risks.

Prior to the mad-cow disease case in 2003, Japan was the biggest buyer of U.S beef and in 2005 it lifted a two-year ban on beef as a precautionary measure. When the ban was lifted in 2005, Japan only took beef from cattle that were 20-months old and the recent announcement would have them accept beef from cattle up to 30-months of age.

The recent shift in regulations will likely pave the way for reform before negotiations are over for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact. 


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