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Genki Sushi cleared to reopen after link to hepatitis A

  • JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Genki Sushi restaurant at Ward Village was closed on August 15 after the state Health Department found a link between raw scallops served there and hepatitis A.

The state Health Department has cleared Genki Sushi restaurants on Oahu and Kauai to reopen, saying they are safe for customers, more than three weeks after shutting them down after finding a link between raw scallops served there and hepatitis A.

The department announced today that medical screening of employees who are returning to work has been completed, along with extensive sanitizing of the restaurants and disposal of potentially contaminated items.

The company said it will reopen all Oahu restaurants Saturday. The Kauai restaurant is undergoing renovations and will remain closed.

“The management team of Genki Sushi restaurants on Oahu and Kauai has given us their full cooperation, and the department is confident that they are in compliance with all health regulations,” said Health Director Dr. Virginia Pressler. “Genki Sushi has been cleared by the Department of Health to reopen to the public.”

The department ordered Genki Sushi to shut its 10 restaurants on Oahu and one on Kauai on Aug. 15 after finding the link between frozen scallops served raw and the outbreak of hepatitis A.

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        • There’s a HUGE difference. Eating raw seafood is founded on the notion that one enjoy quality, fresh, seafood straight from the ocean, not cheap farm raised frozen kaka from a third world country. The whole idea of eating cheap raw seafood hidden inside a mound of mayonnaise and seasoning to disguise the disgusting color, texture, and blandness of the source, coming out on a choo choo train or a conveyor belt is laughable.

      • Lots of vegetables and fruits you eat raw now are sourced from foreign countries. It’s not limited to any specific type of food. Look, let’s not get carried away with all this. Millions of pounds of raw food are consumed daily with no problems. The choice of eating at a place like Genki is not a matter of it being safe or not, it’s more a matter of your standards on what you consider quality sushi and seafood and if Genki fills that standard. Obviously, for a lot of people it does, so for them, go for it. As for me, been to Genki once and it was one time too many.

  • Genki had no idea their supplier sold them bad scallops. They are as much a victim as those who became ill. This episode could cripple their business for quite a while.

    • But it is Genki’s responsibility to check the quality of the ingredients and prepare them accordingly. Who would want to eat there knowing it could happen again with some other supplier?

      • If the Health Department clears it at the docks, it should be good to go. It could happen to ANY restaurant that imports frozen food from foreign countries. Just look at grocery store ads and you’ll see some seafood items listed as PREVIOUSLY FROZEN. Unless you prepare your food yourself, you don’t know what you’re getting.

      • It’s RAW, how do you prepare raw food? Wash and serve, except when they hide it in a mound of rice and seasonings. How do you check for quality when it comes frozen in a package, except to open it and maybe smell it? What do think any other restaurant serving cheap frozen raw seafood do? It probable came tainted from the source, so what, fly guys to Philippines, or any other place? What about raw seafood coming off the boats? Check every boatload? Darn…just so d….b.

    • Great comment “bigger”. The only thing left for them to do is change their name and tell us they have new suppliers, etc. Also, new management, etc. They may well be innocent victims here but that’s the way it goes. They will have to re-invent the wheel if the owners want to survive. Everything has to change including name, logo, interior design, etc. Even then, it may not work.

  • I prefer to not eat sushi that’s been previously frozen. The scallops weren’t the only item they serve as ‘sushi’ that’s been previously frozen…

    • Most of the raw sushi you eat are from previously frozen fish, including tuna, shrimp, fish eggs etc. Unless you’re lucky enough to eat fish products fresh from the boat, you’re out of luck.

    • I don’t think ANY restaurant will get scallops from that supplier from the Philippines anymore. They sold scallops to restaurants in California and Nevada, too.

  • I’m going. Anyone who thinks that one place is safer than another is fooling themselves. I got food poisoning or worse at some of the best and/or most popular restaurants in Hawaii either as a customer or worker. Also from DOE cafeteria food. Can happen anywhere. Strangely – I’ve never gotten sick from eating lunch wagon food. YMMV

    • Agree. Several of us got food poisoning at a Chinese restaurant, yet it’s still getting customers. My wife got sick after eating at a steak restaurant. Like I said in an earlier post, unless you prepare and cook your meals yourself, you don’t know what you’re getting. Look at Chipotle, they shut down restaurants in several states, but now it’s business as usual. And, wasn’t their problems from tainted vegetables? I can’t recall for sure what their items were. Restaurants gets all kinds of different food items from suppliers from the mainland and foreign countries. No can tell for sure if anything went bad until it’s too late.

  • finally they can reopen! good news. too bad there are so many ignorant people that won’t patronize them anymore but will gladly continue going to other restaurants where the risk is the same if not worse. genki has always had safe food handling practices and you can’t say the same for many other restaurants. hopefully they don’t lose too many customers but in the meantime cholo will take advantage of the short or non-existent lines, no waiting baby!

    • Agree. Could happen to any restaurant. Seafood, meats, fruits, vegetables anything could be tainted. No matter if it’s local or imported. Even the food from grocery stores, farmers market, etc. If you don’t handle/prepare properly, you can get sick.

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