Efforts to sterilize insufficient at pickling plants
News On Japan via Yomiuri -- Aug 22
At least five people were confirmed to have died in a mass outbreak of E. coli O-157 food poisoning in Hokkaido as of Monday, with 110 others likely suffering from O-157 contaminated Chinese cabbage pickles.
In addition to the five confirmed fatalities, two elderly women who were residents at a nursing home in Ebetsu, which is near Sapporo, have died after developing symptoms of food poisoning. However, O-157 bacteria has yet to be confirmed as the cause of their deaths. At least three other residents at the same facility have been hospitalized with serious symptoms.
It is strongly believed that the source of the O-157 outbreak was lightly pickled Chinese cabbage. The Sapporo-based food company that processed the cabbage is suspected of failing to properly sterilize the cabbage by heating.
Many details regarding how the E. coli O-157 infections reached epidemic proportions have yet to be clarified. One possible factor behind the mass food poisoning is a method of using less salt when pickling vegetables to suit consumer tastes.
This Monday, members of the seminal metal band X Japan were in Odaiba rubbing shoulders with the likes of Brad Pitt, Lady Gaga and AKB48′s Yuko Oshima. The catch? They were all made out of wax. (Japan Times )
The parents of a nightclub worker killed in an arson fire three years ago filed a suit in the Nagoya District Court on Monday seeking damages against top members of the Yamaguchi-gumi organized crime group. (Tokyo Reporter )
Kyodo News said Monday that it has dismissed Satoshi Kondo, 51, deputy chief of its general administration bureau and former personnel affairs division chief, for meeting individually with a female student searching for a job and doing an inappropriate act.
(Jiji Press )