Beef Buzz News
Japan Lifts 30-Month Rule on US Beef Imports, Creates Room for Potential $200M in Additional ValueMon, 20 May 2019 11:58:55 CDT
Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue announced on Friday that the United States and Japan have agreed on new terms and conditions that eliminate Japan’s longstanding restrictions on U.S. beef exports. That paves the way for expanded sales to the United States’ top global beef market. The new terms take effect immediately, allowing U.S. products from all cattle, regardless of age, to enter Japan for the first time since 2003 when Japan banned U.S. beef and beef products following the detection of an animal with mad cow disease in the United States. USDA estimates that this expanded access could increase U.S. beef and beef product exports to Japan by up to $200 million annually. Colin Woodall of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s Washington, DC office remarked on the news, which comes as a refreshing delight for US beef producers who are starting to feel pressure from foreign competitors enjoying their advantages under the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.
“This is tremendous news and something we’ve been working on for quite some time. It’s really a good lesson in the history of where we’ve been with the Japanese market. Looking at some of the numbers this looks as though it could add another $200 million on top of what is a very valuable market for us,” Woodall said. “So, we’re very excited about the prospect of seeing this age restriction finally lifted.”
According to the US Meat Export Federation, this could be especially rewarding for variety meats as many of those products are typically harvested from older cattle. Woodall says this action demonstrates Japan’s confidence in the US beef industry and how much the Japanese market enjoys the product being delivered. Woodall says the move sends a positive message about what the future might hold in regard to US-Japanese trade relations and striking a bilateral agreement between the two nations.
“We do believe it is very promising because if there was any sort of malice there, we would never have seen this lifting of the age ban,” he said. “So, the fact that we have seen that means they are confident in what we do as an industry here in the US. I think that bodes well for our chances of success in getting a very quick deal done.”
Listen to Woodall speak more about the positive implications this action has for the US beef industry, with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, on today’s Beef Buzz.
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