Taiwan Luthiers wrote:I am sorry, but the first few response just reeks of nationalism.
First of all, it is common knowledge that US does feed beef offals to other cows, thus increasing the risk of transmission of diseases like mad cow disease, that and many inhumane but cheap farming practices that just isn't good.
Plus even if no one bans beef import, no one in Taiwan will buy them because this culture is driven partly by gossip, and once the bad reputation is out, its very hard make it go away. If you notice many restaurants and even Carrefour posted notice saying that they do not use or sell US beef, so the only way to get them is through retailers or restaurants who takes US beef and passes it off as Australian. Threatening Taiwan with loss of visa wavier (which doesn't mean much... its just that the decision is shifted from AIT staff to US immigration checks, both are equally hard-ass) or weapons sale doesn't do the US any good, and in fact will bite them in the ass because people will see US as a bully.
Actually, as a potential cattler farmer right now, I can tell you US does not feed beef offals to cattle anymore. It has been banned for a few years now...
Nor is US beef grown solely on corn or other grain, that's a common misconception thanks to Food Inc., the movie. The truth is, a slaughter weight cattle fetches for about 1600~2000 usd before winter comes. And if a rancher relies on a pure grain fed diet, they won't be in the cattle business for long. Most cattle are raised by grazing. Its only in the last couple of month are they fed more grain. Personally, I think US should take mad cow more seriously. But its close to impossible to do it on the same level as Japan. There's simply too many cattle between NAFTA countries, and the cost would be astronomical.
But then again, I worry more about the chemicals usage on Taiwan's produce than I would US beef. Its scary when traces of chemicals are detected even with so-called "organic" produces.