Japan has no beef with Kansas

Sep 30, 2004

Where's the beef? It's in Kansas, and Japanese businesses and consumers are clamoring for it, according to Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.

During a conference call from Osaka on September 29, Sebelius said Japanese business officials have been urging their government to lift the ban on U.S. beef that it imposed after mad cow disease was discovered last December in Washington state. Last year, Japan was Kansas' second-largest trading partner, importing $175 million worth of beef.

Japanese and American officials are discussing testing standards that could lead to a partial lifting of the ban on beef imports. “Everybody is just speculating,” Sebelius noted. “There were people who said, ‘We hope it happens by Christmas.' There's a lot of demand that this issue be resolved quickly."

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