USDA Secretary Mike Johanns says a USDA technical team headed by Chuck Lambert, acting under secretary for marketing and regulatory programs, will meet with Japanese officials March 27 to answer questions and press for the reopening of Japan to U.S. beef.
Johanns says the U.S. "is eager to provide any additional clarification Japan may request so we can resume beef exports to Japan as quickly as possible. I believe our report is thorough and actions address the unique circumstances surrounding this ineligible shipment."
Accompanying Lambert will be reps of USDA's Food Safety & Inspection Service, Ag Marketing Service, Foreign Ag Service, and the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service. -- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C., correspondent