Fast food giant McDonald's, which traditionally has used only U.S.-raised beef in its domestic outlets, has begun testing the use of imported beef in some of its restaurants.
Livestock industry officials say the decision is largely the result of dwindling U.S. production of the type of beef used in McDonald's hamburgers. That meat generally comes from beef cows and dairy cows. But cow slaughter is dropping in the U.S. because beef and dairy producers are finding it more profitable to hang on to their livestock.
The imported beef, which is being tested in McDonald's restaurants in the southeastern U.S., will come primarily from Australia and New Zealand.