U.S. beef again pulled off Japanese shelves

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Monday, April 28, 2008

News reports out of Japan reveal high-risk spine material has been found in beef imported from the U.S.

For this reason some supermarket chains have been triggered to remove U.S. beef from their shelves.

The Japan Times is reporting that a "high-risk material" contrary to a trade agreement between the two countries was found in U.S. beef, according to Japan's farm ministry.

The ministry said a box of U.S. beef contained a small amount of spinal columns, which was found during a routine inspection at a processing plant in Japan.

The U.S. resumed trade with Japan in July 2006, but spinal chords and columns and brains were banned because the could spread mad cow disease.

The Japan Times has reported major supermarket chain Daiei Inc. was quick to suspend sales of beef imported from the facility which sent the beef from the U.S., beginning today.

Japan is one of Australia's most prized beef markets, and the banning of U.S. beef in 2003 provided significant market opportunities.