Meat No Hope Co.
Inspections of processed beef products have started across Japan following the fraudulent mixing of beef with other meat by Meat Hope Co., according to Yomiuri Shimbun:
The Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry plans to completed the inspection of processed food, such as croquettes, hamburger and meatballs, that are labeled as made from beef within a month. The ministry will purchase products that claim to be made from beef and send about 100 samples to the Food and Agricultural Materials Inspection Center, an independent administrative institute, for testing to determine whether the labels on the products are correct. Results of the inspection will be released by early August, the officials said.
Great news for vegetarians all over Japan: We don't have to wait until early August to find out if meat sold in Japan is what the meat companies tell consumers it is, or not. We avoid the stuff anyway.
Yomiuri Shimbun: Meat Hope sold fake beef to 18 companies
Asahi Shimbun: Ministry: Meat Hope misdeads extensive
Asahi Shimbun: Ministry office failed to act on tip over Meat Hope beef scam
What really bothers me (in addition to Hope Meat having falsified best-before dates, which could be a food safety issue) is that whistle blowers tried to alert the authorities about this a year ago, but noone paid attention. Tests conducted by the Japanese Consumers' Co-operative Union showed that pork and chicken were contained in beef croquettes that used Meat Hope's products as ingredients. Rule of thumb: Test, test, and test again.