A Japanese sushi chain is being called out for seasoning-linked “terrorism” and “hate crimes” against foreign customers.
Fujii Shokuhin Co., which manages the Ichibazushi sushi chain in Ibaraki, Osaka, apologized Sunday for the actions of its franchise.
The Osaka-based chain has been accused of hiding excessive and inedible amounts of wasabi in food served to foreigners for about two years, reports The Japan Times.
The sushi chain said it added more wasabi, spicy green seasoning that can make your nose run and eyes water, in an effort to provide more “excitement” for foreigners.
The company admitted to overloading its sushi products with wasabi, but denied specifically targeting foreigners or having negative intentions.
“There was no discriminatory intent involved here,” Fujii Shokuhin said in an online apology.
“Because many of our overseas customers frequently order extra amounts of pickled ginger and wasabi, we gave them more without checking first,” the franchise operator explained.
“The result was unpleasant for some guests who aren’t fans of wasabi,” the company added.
The apology came after social media users attacked the chain for wasabi terrorism and hate crimes against foreigners, specifically Koreans.
“‘Wasabi terror’: apparently some sushi restaurants in Osaka have been trolling Korean tourists by adding extra wasabi to their orders,” said one netizen. “Racial harassment? Osaka sushi restaurant serves Korean tourists with inedible amounts of #wasabi between fish and rice.”
Even after the company apologized, some were left unsatisfied. “That is no apology. What they did was a hate crime,” wrote one user on Twitter.
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