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582 pieces of moldy bread found in lunches at east Japan schools

This image shows a school. (Getty)

INZAI, Chiba -- A total of 582 pieces of moldy bread served in lunches at junior high schools in this eastern Japan city have been collected, the local municipal government announced.

    Seventeen students claimed they felt sick, such as having stomachaches, and among them two received treatment at the hospital. The Inzai Municipal Government in Chiba Prefecture has since decided to provide only lunches with rice cooked by contractors, and to allow students to bring their own lunches from home.

    Numerous schools contacted local authorities around noon of Sept. 3, reporting that there was "something mold-like attached to bread." Some 3,000 loaves had been distributed among students, teachers and other staff members at all nine municipal junior high schools, with one person receiving one piece each.

    The municipal education board found and collected a total of 582 pieces of moldy bread offered at eight schools in the city. The substance was confirmed as mold by inspectors on Sept. 4.

    Following a large-scale renovation of the lunch center that usually supplies meals to schools, the city had exchanged a contract with a supplier in the city of Funabashi that had apparently secured the bread by placing an outside order to a contractor in the city of Chiba. Municipal authorities have been asking for more details about the problem from related sources.

    (Japanese original by Toshiaki Hashimoto, Kashiwa Local Bureau)

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