Japan’s Process for Changing Beef Rules Is Grinding On

While both the USMEF and NCBA have said encouraging things this year regarding the possibility of Japan’s beef import regulations joining the international standard of cattle up to 30 months of age, published reports from Japan today indicated official progress.

The wheels of progress grind exceedingly slow, however.  Last December, the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry in Japan requested an assessment of imported beef safety and proposed raising the age limit from 20 to 30 months, according to The Japan Times (“Beef Import Rules May Be Eased Next Year,” Sept. 5, 2012.)  Since that time, a 13-member panel of experts — part of the Food Safety Commission — has been studying the issue.  They have “agreed to compile a report that would allow the regulations” to be amended.

The Food Safety Commission will “canvass public opinions” regarding the proposal for about a month before officially reporting recommendations to the Health, Labor and
Welfare Ministry.  No one has yet commented on the tenor of expected public comment.

It is uncertain exactly when the new rules would go into effect.  The Japan Times estimated early next year, while an AP story indicated late in 2012 is possible.  The rule adjustments would affect beef from the U.S., Canada, France and the Netherlands.

Published in: on September 5, 2012 at 4:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

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