Japanese retailer Seiyu Ltd., of which Wal-Mart Stores Inc. owns 51%, began marketing U.S. beef in 20 stores in Japan's Kanto region in late March. The Seiyu Group operates about 400 stores in Japan.

The beef is certified as originating from U.S. cattle 20 months of age or younger, and includes U.S. beef chuck for steak, thin-sliced U.S. beef chuck and sliced U.S. beef chuck for barbecue.

A Seiyu news release says a representative from the firm inspected the U.S. meat-processing facility and confirmed its traceability procedures, accuracy and consistency. “Therefore, we believe our customers will again welcome safe U.S. beef,” the release said.