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TOKYO - Japan's largest meat dealer said today it repackaged inexpensive beef and pork as top-quality brands for sale to supermarkets, The Associated Press reports. The food-labeling scandal is the second to hit the country in just over a month.
For almost two years, Tokyo-based Starzen Co. mislabeled pork from cheaper white pigs as a high-grade variety from black pigs, company spokesman Yukihiro Tsukuda said. The company may have gained up to 30 percent more profit by mislabeling, Tsukuda said.
The Starzen scam comes after Snow Brand Foods Co., Japan's No. 6 meat packer, said last week it will shut down in the wake of a mislabeling scandal that has triggered widespread anxiety about mad cow disease in Japan.