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From: TSS (
Subject: Japan raps importer as banned US beef found in container of pork
Date: November 19, 2004 at 9:05 am PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Japan raps importer as banned US beef found in container of pork
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 11:15:05 -0600
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
CC: David Wiesner

Japan raps importer as banned US beef found in container of pork

AFP: 11/19/2004

TOKYO, Nov 19 (AFP) - Japan discovered and will destroy 310 kilograms
(680 pounds) of US beef, which is banned here due to fears of mad cow
disease, after it arrived inside a shipment of US pork, officials said

"It was apparently a mistake on behalf of the exporting party. But we
told the importer to prevent such a mistake from happening again," said
an official with the farm ministry.

Japan, once the biggest US export market for beef, banned imports of US
beef in December 2003 after mad cow disease, a variant of which can
affect humans, was discovered in US stocks.

US authorities announced Thursday they were investigating a possible
second case of mad cow disease.

The banned beef was discovered by Japanese authorities Tuesday during a
routine port inspection in Tokyo of a container which was supposed to
carry only pork.

But the shipment contained 310 kilograms of beef in 20 boxes, along with
6,800 kilograms (15,000 pounds) of pork, the farm ministry said.

"Through the US embassy in Tokyo, we are investigating how the mistake
happened," the official said.

The beef will be incinerated, said the official, who doubted the
incident was the work of criminal "beef smugglers."

Japan and the United States reached a basic agreement in October to
resume Japanese imports of US beef, but technical teams are still
working out how to determine the age of cows to be monitored.

Japan has screened every cow slaughtered for consumption after
confirming mad cow, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy, in its own herd
in September 2001.

Japan is the only Asian country to have confirmed mad cow disease, which
decimated Britain's cattle industry starting in the 1990s.

11/19/2004 03:59 GMT - AFP


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