Import restrictions on beef from Japan due to FMD

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Thursday, June 03, 2010

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) notified the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), that APHIS veterinary services (VS) has placed temporary restrictions on certain commodities from Japan due to an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in cattle.

As a result, APHIS is drafting an interim rule that would remove Japan from the list of regions recognised as free of FMD. Once published, that rule would indefinitely prohibit the importation of susceptible animals and most products from susceptible animals from Japan.

Ruminant (cattle, sheep, goats, camelids and cervids) meat and meat by-products are currently prohibited from Japan due to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), with the exception of boneless cuts of fresh beef, normally referred to as Kobe beef. Under these new import restrictions, boneless/Kobe beef will now be refused entry, including in passenger baggage.

Fresh pork from Japan is currently prohibited entry due to swine vesicular disease and classical swine fever. Ruminant and swine products and by-products such as milk and milk products, blood/serum, tissues, nutraceuticals and research samples must now be imported accompanied by a VS import permit that lists treatments to mitigate for FMD. Shipments not accompanied by appropriate documentation of an FMD treatment will be refused entry.

These restrictions exclude cooked canned shelf-stable pork meat, which can continue to enter the United States. However, cooked canned shelf-stable ruminant meat continues to be prohibited due to BSE.
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