40 Years on: USMEF and ALIC Still Play Critical Partnership Role

Published: Friday, June 17th, 2016

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USMEF hosted a meeting on June 13 with top officials from Japan’s Agriculture and Livestock Industries Corporation (ALIC), which plays a critical role in the stability of Japan’s agricultural sector. USMEF and ALIC have a long history of working together on key issues and this week’s meeting was the latest in a four-decades-long fruitful partnership between the two organizations.

ALIC officials offer USMEF unique insights on the legislative and regulatory environment in Japan

ALIC officials offer USMEF unique insights on the legislative and regulatory environment in Japan

“ALIC has been a key partner and an invaluable resource for USMEF,” said USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng. “Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture and the trade in Japan work closely with ALIC, and we exchange information on economic trends, the ramifications of trade policy and issues and other factors impacting the market. Last year ALIC and USMEF jointly organized and hosted the International Meat Secretariat (IMS) Economic Workshop in Tokyo, the first such event to be held in Asia.”

Assistant Vice President Greg Hanes, Economist Erin Borror and Trade Analyst Jessica Strutzel gave the ALIC officials a global market update and explained the role USMEF plays in exporting U.S. red meat. They described the latest USMEF market activities in Japan and finished with a wide-ranging overview of production and processing practices in the U.S. beef and pork industries.

Senior Vice President Paul Clayton and Technical Services Manager Travis Arp covered new research on beef quality and flavor and key technologies used in U.S. production, and introduced the ALIC delegation to U.S. lamb as access for U.S. lamb exports to Japan nears.

Hanes then led ALIC Vice President Yasuko Kondo and Senior Counselor Toru Yokota on a detailed look at merchandising techniques for beef and pork — pre-cooked, pre-marinated, pre-rubbed and packaged meals — in the U.S. retail and foodservice sectors, as well as on tours of a feedlot, a seedstock producer and the Department of Animal Sciences at Colorado State University.

“Conveying a solid understanding of the U.S. red meat industry was the objective,” said Hanes. “Without actually seeing and experiencing it, it is very difficult for people from Japan to understand the vast scale of our farms and ranches, which result in practices very different from those in Japan. Having some experience with and a deeper understanding of why certain practices are employed in the United States, helps to minimize potential misunderstandings between the two countries on agriculture and meat issues.”