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Hankyu Hanshin Hotels president to resign over menu scandal

22 Comments

Hankyu Hanshin Hotels Co President Hiroshi Desaki said Monday that he planned to step down over a scandal involving mislabeled menus in restaurants and hotels.

The scandal unfolded last week after Hankyu Hanshin Holdings Inc admitted it had mislabeled ingredients used in 47 menus at its restaurants and hotels.

The company is currently under investigation by the Consumer Affairs Agency over the scandal, although prior to his resignation, Desaki referred to the incident as one of "mislabeling" rather than deception.

According to the agency, eight hotels and four restaurants operated by Hankyu Hanshin in Kyoto and Osaka misrepresented ingredients in dishes that were eaten by an estimated 79,000 customers, TBS reported Tuesday. The company said it had refunded more than 10,000 customers who ate at the restaurants in question.

Desaki's resignation will be effective from Nov 1.

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22 Comments
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not enough, should face severe penalty such as suspension of business operations from 10h Dec.2013 ~ 9th Jan. 2014

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Yeah, but, is this an admission of guilt that he was aware of the duping or is he just taking the rap for it? Hopefully, there will be a full investigation into this and every other restaurant chain and severe penalties handed out cos you can bet this is not an isolated incident for one company. The new Japanese industry motto is, "it's only illegal if you get caught!"

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Desaki just taking the hit for the company and sure the overseas branch is giving him a nice Golden parachute so he will be well taken care of. Unbelievable this could happen and to risk the companies reputation, who wants to go work for them and clients will second guess them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe they should re-name the chain "Hanshin Hangi" ... lol

0 ( +1 / -1 )

You've been served.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Mislabling whats the big deal?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Should be charged with fraud for deceiving the people who paid good money thinking they were getting something they were not.

All too common here unfortunately

0 ( +0 / -0 )

“mislabeling” rather than deception.

aren't we all human? don't be too fast to cast the first stone.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Tiger_In_The_Hermitage:did you really just ask that? They were selling cheap products on a premium by mislabeling them. Surely one cannot be that obtuse?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This happens a zillion times a day all over the world. My dad, an avid fisherman, says he goes out to eat seafood and order rainbow trout, and its tilapia. VERY similar, but cheaper, and if you know your fish, then you can tell the difference. Its a common practice. How many restaurant heads do you think stepped down in disgrace?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Welcome, Special Adviser Desaki.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've actually been to the Osaka Ritz-Carlton on many occasions. Beautiful hotel, but expensive and I've paid for some pretty expensive meals there.

I won't be going there again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Usual disgruntled employee issue. Japanese customers expect 5 star menus for 1 star prices...no wonder this happens.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

He's actually taken a different position. He's stepped down from that position, but as usual nobody gets punished for this type of behavior and Japan keeps churning out cheats. Tepco, Hankyu Hanshin, Olympus, MiZuho... Same sht, different day.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I predicted this very outcome with a comment I made a few days ago. :-)

Remember, in Japan there is this issue of what we call "losing face"--and Hankyu Hanshin Holdings lost of lot of respect over this unfortunate scandal. That's why the head of its hotel division stepped down in very short order.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He's been very unctuous.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You've been served. thumbs up Nessie

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Remember, in Japan there is this issue of what we call "losing face"--and Hankyu Hanshin Holdings lost of lot of respect over this unfortunate scandal...

I think we're all aware of that and I'm not surprised. At least he has some pride. The notable exception to this unwritten rule is TEPCO. Their whole senior management should have resigned a year ago. What gives?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

usual nobody gets punished

Usually all the staff gets punished. They'll all be without a job soon, even the 99% of lower employees that were only obeying orders from their management. The company will lose much more than the money to deceived customers. Already 100 million paid in the first week. Surely all reservations and events in the next months have been all canceled. Do you remember Semba Kitcho ? They had the same scandal, and the company has disappeared in a sea of debts, closing all restaurants within a few months. What they can do ? They'd have to sell Ritz-Carlton to another group. For the rest, close and restart totally all the others restaurants with new teams. Even with that...

At least he has some pride.

Not at all. Clearly, the investors fired him. He is pathetic. He was taking himself for Tepco. He had proposed to get a 20% cut on his salary, and gave his sincere apologies. He said something like "I apologize but I sincerely think we did nothing wrong".

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This is the least senior execs need to do after blaming their staff for this scandal. The Ritz-Carlton Osaka also need to follow suit for blaming their staff. Reputation takes years to establish but can fall in an instant: customers will stop going to these establishments, as they would stop buying Kao/Kanebo scandal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Color me obtuse. What was the actual crime, serving cat carcass as prime rib or what?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Mike: it was things like saying they were using freshly squeezed orange juice when it was actually frozen concentrate, using different (cheaper and smaller) types of shrimp than what was listed on their menu.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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