Just-in-time sushi

Kura Zushi is in the news, as one of the sushi chains that have adopted just-in-time management techniques to improve service and make more money. The chain also makes a rule not to use artificial flavorings and additives, and it publicizes where the fish are from.

Monitors in the kitchen at its Sugawara outlet in the prefecture show the number of children and adults in the restaurant and how long they have been there. This is done in three categories: up to 8 minutes, between 8 and 16 minutes, and between 16 and 24 minutes.

The data is updated every minute. If there are many children, the kitchen churns out more items that will likely appeal, such as sushi rolls without wasabi and hamburger sushi. Popular items like tuna and yellowtail are served if a large number of patrons arrive at once.

Kunihiko Tanaka, president of Kura, says to Asahi: "The less uneaten sushi we discard, the lower the costs. It is also eco-friendly."

So how are they doing? The percentage of sushi that went to waste fell from 7-8 percent to less than 6 percent in two to three years, according to the company.

Asahi: Just-in-time revolving sushi bars thriving


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