Shoichi Nakagawa, Japan’s Agriculture Minister, has said that the US Department of Agriculture investigation into beef safety that examinesd how prohibited veal cuts were shipped to Japan was “insufficient”.

“The content of the report was insufficient for Japan. There are many items that we want to confirm,” he told reporters after meeting with Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

The USDA report, delivered on Friday (17 February), said that the veal shipment of prohibited ‘high risk-cuts’ that caused the Japanese import-ban of US beef to be reintroduced just days after it was lifted, was the result of confusion among US meat inspectors as to what products were eligible for export.

Following the investigation, the US introduced a number of changes designed to reassure Japan that such a mistake could not be repeated.