a recent shipment of US beef bound for South Korea was found to contain banned
part considered a "specified risk material" that could carry mad cow
disease, Seoul has suspended US beef imports in to the country, the Yonhap news
agency has reported.
South Korean agriculture ministry said it halted quarantine inspections of American
beef shipments yesterday after discovering a banned vertebral column in a recent
shipment, Without such inspections, the beef cannot be brought to market.
in December 2003, the country had halted American beef imports after the outbreak
of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, referred to as mad cow disease, in cattle
in the US.
country had partially reopened its market last year but agreed to accept only
boneless meat from cattle less than 30 months, considered to be less at risk of
carrying the illness.
an unrelated development on US beef exports, the US and its long-time ally Japan
today started a two-day technical meeting in Tokyo to discuss keeping US beef
imports free of mad cow disease even as Washington has asked Japan to relax its
allows imports of US beef only from cattle 20 months or younger. Meat with certain
bone or spinal material cannot be imported.
two-day, closed meeting, a follow-up to previous talks held in June, will focus
on fresh data provided by the US on cattle feed and the surveillance system in
the United States.
had also banned American beef imports in December 2003 but eased the in December
2005, but tightened restrictions again after discovering prohibited spinal bones
in a veal shipment the following month.