Japan imposed a ban on the beef imported from the United States when the first case of mad cow disease came around in December 2003. Japan and the United States have been discussing business to renegotiate the international trade between the two countries. Before the mad cow disease case, Japan was the most lucrative overseas market for the United States in beef producers. It amounted to be about $1.7 billion in beef. Just lately the Japanese agreed to do more business with the United States by importing U.S. grade A40 beef. This classification of beef falls into the category of cattle aged 12 to 17 months. Before mad cow disease, the age of the cattle had not been an issue. The United States are more than willing to cooperated with these new guidelines in order to revive the business with the Japanese.