Got Beef?

Despite the massive demonstrations just a few months ago, American beef is on the rise here in Korea. Imports resumed on 1 July, after a five-year hiatus, and since then it has taken hold of 20% of the market. Australian beef still reigns with its 60% share, but American beef is already the second most popular beef import. On 2 July, Han Seung-soo, the Prime Minister of Korea, ordered American beef (worth 260 000 won) for him and his family in a high-profile dinner. He did so to help remove the stigma of US beef and show the people that it was safe.

In late June, the Korean TV channel MBC, whose program "PD Notebook" needlessly informed its viewers that Korean were more susceptible to BSE than other ethnic groups, issued an apology for the misinformation, stating it was a "translation error." This came after a month of pressure of journalists and politicians who say this program really increased Koreans' paranoia about eating American beef. This apology wasn't good enough, though, and, in mid-August, the channel was court-ordered to apologize on-air and say that it deliberately exaggerated some information and created some mistranslations.

Now, just three months after imports resumed, it's not an issue that I ever hear about anymore. My question is, when will Canadian beef be allowed back into Korea?

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Crazy Cows & Korea