The end may be near for export barriers that have hampered the sale of Iowa beef abroad. It’s been two years since an animal born in Canada tested positive in Washington state for B-S-E, bovine spongiform encephalopathy: Mad Cow Disease. Japan, the largest beef export market for the U.S. up to that time, quickly banned all imports of beef from U.S. producers. Since then, just one more case has been confirmed in hundreds of thousands of tests on slaughtered animals. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s confirmed it has been quietly holding talks with visiting Japanese government officials, and that nation’s Food Safety Commission could make a decision on resuming imports of our beef as soon as today.
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