WASHINGTON (AFP) – US Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns welcomed news that Taiwan is lifting a ban on imports of US beef imposed to keep out mad cow disease.
“I’m extremely pleased with Taiwan’s resumption of trade in US beef,” Johanns said in a statement. “This advances our goal to resume normal beef trade throughout the world that follows science-based international guidelines in food and animal safety,” he said. Taiwan said it would allow the resumption of shipments of boneless US beef taken from cattle aged under 30 months, which are considered to be safe from bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE).
Taiwan reopened its market to US beef in April after a two-year ban but closed it again in June following the confirmation of a second case of BSE in a US cow.
In 2003, the United States exported more than 76 million dollars’ worth of beef to Taiwan.
A number of Asian countries have in recent weeks lifted bans on US beef. But Japan last week re-imposed its ban after the discovery of banned spinal material in a shipment of veal from New York..