14 Sep Japanese Wagyu Back on Australian Menus
Although wagyu is increasingly popular in Australian restaurants, imports of Japanese wagyu were prohibited under a biosecurity ban Australia imposed due to a case of BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) discovered there in 2001. The recent lifting of the ban has seen Japanese wagyu re-introduced to the local market, with Vice Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) Ryosuke Kozuki making a quick dash to Sydney to celebrate.
The total number of beef cattle in Japan at 1 February 2018 was 1.7 million head (Australia by comparison has approximately 25 million head). Japanese wagyu re-entering Australia is important to Japan’s promotion of local food exports (see Japanese Sake: The Next Frontier?), with top tier restaurants serving Japanese and modern Australian cuisine a prime target market for the product.