GOV’T TO APPEAL RULING OVER DAMAGES FOR SPROUT GROWERS
May 29, 2003
TOKYO — Ministry sources were cited as saying Thursday that the Japanese health ministry is planning to appeal a recent ruling by the Tokyo High Court ordering the state to pay damages to growers of white radish sprouts for branding the vegetable as a probable cause of a fatal outbreak of food poisoning in 1996 in Osaka.
The story says that the high court on May 21 ruled that the government must pay about 16.9 million yen in compensation to growers of “Kaiware” radish sprouts for damaging their businesses by releasing unconfirmed information when it said the sprouts were the likely source of the outbreak of food poisoning in Osaka caused by the O-157 strain of E. coli bacteria.
The growers had demanded that the state pay 110 million yen to make up for the lost revenue they suffered following the announcement, while the ministry had said the announcement was appropriate. The story adds that the government has not reached a final conclusion on what was the cause of the food poisoning.