Australian beef not linked to illnesses in Japan

by Bryan Salvage
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TOKYO – Melanie Brock, Meat & Livestock Australia Japan regional manager, confirmed with the Toyama Prefecture health authorities that the authorities' test results have found no E. coli O157 contamination in Australian beef in relation to the recent foodborne illness incident in the Prefecture.

Last week it was reported that a group of 36 people ate at one of the Gyukaku yakiniku restaurants on May 6 and 20 people later reported symptoms consistent with E. coli contamination. REINS International, the company that operates the yakiniku chain, subsequently reported the cause of the illness was E. coli O157.

Following a thorough inspection, the Toyama Prefecture health authorities have confirmed that imported Australian beef was not the source of an incident of E. coli on May 6 at a BBQ restaurant chain outlet in Takaoka, Toyama Prefecture, Japan. The authorities continue to investigate other food consumed by the affected customers.
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