Good news for Nebraska beef producers: Japan has eliminated the last of its restrictions on imports of U.S. beef.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue met with Japanese government officials, last week, and established new science-based trade rules. The new terms, which take effect immediately, allow U.S. products from all cattle to enter Japan for the first time since 2003. The agreement is an important step in normalizing U.S. trade with Japan.

“This is great news for American ranchers and exporters who now have full access to the Japanese market for their high-quality, safe, wholesome, and delicious U.S. beef,” Secretary Perdue said. “We are hopeful that Japan’s decision will help lead other markets around the world toward science-based policies.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates the move will mean up to $200 million more in U.S. beef sales. Nebraska typically exports about 15% of the nation’s beef, pointing to a $30-$40 million per year boost to the state’s economy.

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