TOKYO – Japan’s farm ministry announced the US will resume beef imports from Japan on Aug. 17, ending a two-year suspension imposed after foot-and-mouth disease was found in Japanese cows.
Imports of Japanese beef were suspended in April 2010 when an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease was confirmed in the southern Japan prefecture of Miyazaki and in several surrounding farms. The value of Japan’s beef exports to the US was 1.08 billion yen ($13.74 million) in 2007, but declined to 210 million yen in 2010 when imports were suspended, according to the Yomiuri newspaper.
Currently, Japan allows imports of US beef from cattle aged 20 months or younger. Australia has a majority share of Japan’s beef imports at 500,000 tonnes a year, according to Reuters.