Organic meat in Japan

Supertaster
Bento-ing from: Boston › Massachusetts › USA
Joined: 10 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 50 weeks ago.

I just saw your post about miso pork and wondered whether you recommend buying organic meat in Japan. I moved to Tokyo a year ago and don't know anything about how meat is raised in Japan, whether there is widespread use of hormones and/or antibiotics in treating cattle or poultry. Thanks!

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maki
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Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 8 weeks 8 hours ago.
Re: Organic meat in Japan

That's a bit of a complicated question. Domestically produced meat, in general, does not use a lot of hormones and so on. However, a lot of meat sold in Japan is imported, especially from the US, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina etc. There are frequent trade problems with the US about importing meat that has been fed growth hormones and so on (the US has similar trade issues with the EU). So you should read labels and see about country of origin if you are concerned (especially, I'm sorry to say, meat of U.S. origin). You could also look into farm coops (農協), who generally tout that their meat is growth hormone-free etc. You do pay more for 'happy' meat, as you do in most places.

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bronwyncarlisle
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Bento-ing from: Dunedin › New Zealand
Joined: 12 Jan 2009
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Re: Organic meat in Japan

I can give you some info on meat raised in New Zealand. Our beef and lamb (which I don't think you find a lot of in Japan, but I may be wrong) are all, without exception, "free range", and only have antibiotics if they are sick. Not necessarily organic, although that is increasingly available. I'm not sure about the current status of growth hormone use, but it is many years since we were bombarded with ads for growth hormones on the TV at dinner time (when farmers can be counted on to be in the house and watching) Our pork, on the other hand, is usually raised in pens. Not crowded pens (they have little houses with wee yards so they can go outside in the sun and rain) but it is reasonably intensive farming when compared with cattle and sheep. There is organic pasture raised pork available here, but I doubt whether we export any of it. I don't know about antibiotics and hormones though.

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Bronwyn

My blog is Food and Shoes

Supertaster
Bento-ing from: Boston › Massachusetts › USA
Joined: 10 Jan 2009
User offline. Last seen 1 year 50 weeks ago.
Re: Organic meat in Japan

Thank you very much for the information. I guess I'll do my best to seek out Australian and New Zealand meat products. We love the lamb and beef already and think that it's probably safer than US meat. I'll keep searching for more answers and will report back when I find some! Thanks again!

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