Chinese shops pull Japanese food items from shelves over safety fears
Japan Today -- Mar 19
A number of Chinese stores have almost completely pulled Japanese food products from their shelves after a consumer rights show aired by China's state-run broadcaster CCTV alleged that some items are from areas affected by the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Kyodo News confirmed that stores in Beijing and Shanghai, at least, as well as some online shops, have stopped selling Japanese food products. Chinese media reports say that the withdrawals have begun in more than 10 major cities, also including Tianjin, Guangzhou and Nanjing.

Some outlets put notices for customers at their emptied shelves explaining that they are carrying out safety checks on Japanese food items after being informed by the government of the broadcast.

CCTV reported Wednesday that Japanese food items from Fukushima or its surrounding areas, the import of which Chinese authorities have banned in the wake of the nuclear disaster, have actually been sold in China.

Among Chinese consumers, who have gained more purchasing power in recent years, imports from Japan and other foreign countries are popular, while local authorities continue to face serious challenges in ensuring the safety of domestically produced goods.

The scare broke out despite Sino-Japanese relations being much better than several years ago, when they were at the lowest ebb in decades over a territorial row and wartime issues.

While the removals could expand rapidly in other parts of China, Shanghai food supervisory authorities said they have not so far found any problematic Japanese items.

In addition to Chinese retailers, Japanese brand Muji specifically came under the spotlight and was shamed during the two-hour annual program, composed of undercover reports and entertainment performances.

News source: Japan Today
Mar 25
A court in Japan has sentenced a 21-year-old former university student to life imprisonment for murdering an elderly woman and poisoning classmates when she was a minor. (NHK)
Mar 25
The Meteorological Agency on Friday warned that an underwater volcano about 400 km south of Tokyo could erupt soon, spurring the Japan Coast Guard to issue an alert to ships in the area. (Japan Times)
Mar 25
Japan's Liberal Democratic Party on Friday submitted a record of email exchanges in which Akie Abe, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's wife, denies her alleged payment of one million yen to an embattled school operator. (Jiji)
Mar 25
Japanese Defense Minister Tomomi Inada ordered the Ground Self-Defense Force on Friday to withdraw its engineering troops taking part in a U.N. peacekeeping mission in South Sudan by the end of May. (Jiji)
Mar 25
The Tokyo District Court on Friday found a former employee of business newspaper publisher Nikkei Inc. guilty of intercepting the email of female celebrities. (Japan Times)
Mar 24
Saitama Prefectural Police have arrested a chef from Osaka for allegedly releasing dozens of live cockroaches during an anime song concert at an arena last year, reports TBS News. (
Mar 23
The head of a scandal-hit school operator has told the Diet that he received a donation of one million yen, or about 9,000 dollars, from the wife of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. (NHK)
Mar 23
Fewer Japanese are taking their own lives, a positive sign in a country with one of the world's highest suicide rates. (Japan Times)
Mar 23
Kobe District Court on Wednesday sentenced a man to death, as sought by public prosecutors, for fatally stabbing a total of five men and women in Awajishima, an island in the western Japan prefecture of Hyogo, in March 2015. (Jiji)
Mar 23
A Japanese woman has given birth to a girl after receiving in-vitro fertilization treatment with an egg from an anonymous third-party donor, a nonprofit organization based in the western Japan city of Kobe said Wednesday. (Jiji)