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Korean Beef Imports from US Recover to Half of Total

03 December 2019

SOUTH KOREA - US beef, once shunned by consumers fearful of mad cow disease, is now half of total beef imports.

According to the Korea International Trade Association (KITA) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, in the first ten months of this year, 209,034 tons of US beef were imported. That’s a 7.9 percent increase from the 193,685 tons imported during the same period a year ago.

By value, $1.54 billion of US beef was imported, up 10.4 percent from $1.39 billion in the first ten months of last year.

It is the most US beef imported in the first 10 months of a year since 2003, when the Korean government limited the import of US beef over mad cow disease concerns.

US beef is now 50 percent of the 415,112 tons imported into the country, the first time since 2003 that it broke that level. That year, it hit 68.3 percent by volume and 75.3 by value.

In December 2003, the Korean government completely banned all imports of US beef after several suspected cases of mad cow disease were reported that year.

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Source: Korea Joongang Daily

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