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Rat Parts Discovered in Japanese Sliced Bread, Prompting Large-Scale Recall

Rat in Sliced Bread

A major Japanese food supplier has recalled over 100,000 packs of its popular sliced white bread after rat parts were found in two loaves. This incident has sparked food safety concerns in a country renowned for its high food quality standards. Here are some details from the report of CNN International.

Bread Recall Announced

Pasco Shikishima Corporation released a statement on Wednesday acknowledging that parts of “a small animal” were found in two packs of its white “chojuku” bread. This bread, known for its extra chewy texture, was manufactured at a factory in the western Tokyo prefecture. The company later confirmed to CNN that the remains were identified as rat parts.

The company recalled about 104,000 packs of bread from the same production line, even though no illness cases have been reported. The recall was issued as a precautionary measure. It also halted operations to investigate the cause of the contamination and implement corrective measures. The recall does not affect products sold overseas, according to a company spokesperson.

Japan’s Food Safety Reputation in Question

Japan’s food safety reputation has been tarnished by a series of recent scandals. One of these incidents involved the March 2024 recall of three dietary supplements by Kobayashi Pharmaceutical. The recall was triggered by several deaths and over 100 hospitalizations. Other incidents have involved cockroach contamination at convenience store rice balls and food terrorism pranks at fast food chains.

Pasco’s recall has triggered a mixed reaction on social media, with patrons expressing disappointment over the discovery while maintaining their fondness for the bread. One user on X (formerly Twitter) shared a photo of the product, writing, “I used to like the chojuku the best.” Another user referenced the company’s advertisement, stating, “I love chojuku bread. It is safe and contains no unnecessary ingredients,” adding, “I also use it for my child’s baby food.” The same user then quipped, “I bet it tastes good for small animals too.”

The discovery has prompted calls for stricter food safety measures and quality control. Meanwhile, the company is investigating the root cause of the contamination to prevent future incidents.

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