Japan has halted beef imports from a Tyson Fresh Meats plant in Hillsdale, Ill., after finding meat that could not be confirmed to comply with its restrictions. Japanese officials said it was the 15th violation by U.S. Beef suppliers in five years, reports Reuters.

The inclusion of beef without proper documents in a cargo checked on Oct. 17, however, resulted in Japan's halting of beef imports. Officials said that U.S. authorities had reported they could not confirm the beef in the shipment was from cattle aged 20 months or less.

Asked to comment, Worth Sparkman, Tyson Foods Inc Manager Public Relations, said in a statement,

"One of our beef processing plants has been suspended from exporting to Japan pending a review of an order discrepancy. We are working with the Japanese government to review the facts and it is our hope the matter will be resolved quickly."

An official from Japan's health ministry said: "It is regrettable to make this announcement." It is the first violation case this fiscal year which started in April 2011, and there was only one case in 2010/11, the official said.

"We're scheduled to ask the views of our panel of experts about the risk of BSE at home and abroad on Oct. 31, with the latest facts and findings provided," he added.

Source: Reuters