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‘Sushi terror’ Pranks Outrage Japan

'Sushi terror' Pranks Outrage Japan
‘Sushi terror’ Pranks Outrage Japan. Credit: Tim Reckmann / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.0

A recent wave of pranks referred to as “sushi terror” has caused Japanese customers to reconsider their visits to conveyor belt restaurants, which are iconic in the country.

It has led to changes in the way that chains offer their signature dish, and arrests have even been made as a result.

The police have arrested a group of 3 young people for attempting to disrupt the operations of the well-known restaurant chain Kura Sushi. The chain was flooded with customer complaints after a video of the prank went viral.

What is a ‘Sushi terror’ Prank?

The trend involves perpetrators tampering with plates of food traveling down conveyor belts or contaminating shared soy sauce bottles and then posting videos of their actions on social media. As a result, restaurants have been forced to take measures to safeguard their customers from potential contamination.

The pranksters responsible for “sushi terrorism” have targeted popular restaurant chains such as Sushiro, Kura Sushi, and Hamazushi, according to CNN.

Kura Sushi, for instance, reported an incident in which three individuals engaged in an “extremely malicious nuisance” at one of its restaurants in Nagoya on February 3, resulting in numerous customer complaints. Other kaitenzushi chains have also filed police reports in response to similar incidents.

Police have arrested three people so far

The Japanese police have recently taken action in response to the growing “sushi terror” trend, resulting in the arrests of three individuals.

Three people have been charged with forcible obstruction of business operations, marking the first such arrests involving customers suspected of “unhygienic behavior and harassment,” according to a report by the Kyodo news agency.

The suspects, all members of the same group of diners, were caught on CCTV cameras engaging in inappropriate behavior at the restaurant.

One of the customers, 21-year-old Ryoga Yoshino, reportedly placed his mouth on a soy sauce dispenser, while two other customers, a 19 years old man, and a 15 year old girl, were arrested for sharing a 10 seconds video clip showing Yoshino’s actions.

Kura Sushi, one of the affected restaurant chains, has praised the police for their prompt response, stating that such inconsiderate actions undermine the trust they have built with their customers.

Precautions by restaurants

The “sushi terror” pranks in Japan have prompted restaurants across the country to take swift action to guarantee their hygiene standards to customers.

As a result, chains such as Sushiro have implemented new service rules requiring diners to collect their own utensils and condiments from staff to prevent potential sabotage attempts.

In response to the escalating trend, Kura Sushi has developed an innovative alert system. The restaurant chain has equipped some of its conveyor belts with sensors and cameras, enabling them to detect instances of tampering.

If a customer is caught returning a plate that has been tampered with, an alert will be sent to the company’s offices in Saitama prefecture, near Tokyo and Osaka, and the affected restaurant will be notified accordingly.

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