Internet-based tracking system allows Japanese consumers to dial in beef's origin

December 7, 2004, as reported by just-food.com: Japan is on its way to total traceability of its country’s beef not that its retailers and restaurants have begun using a new beef tracing system.

All beef outlets, over 30,000 of them, will have to attach a ten-digit individual identification number or cattle lot number to their produce. Consumers, most of whom carry web-enabled phones, can trace information such as the age of the animal plus where it was raised via the Internet. The introduction of the new system makes Japan’s tracking capabilities among the widest in the world.

Japan initially forced beef producers to list detailed data on their beef in the wake of BSE outbreaks in Japan and abroad.




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