Snow Brand Food union workers protest against 800 sackings

Snow Brand Food Co. has dismissed about 800 workers on March 31, following its decision to close down. 210 union members at the company's plant in Kasukabe City in Saitama (near Tokyo) and local residents held a rally on March 30 in protest against the dismissals.

It was discovered in January that Snow Brand Food had deliberately mislabeled imported beef as domestic meat in an attempt to illegally obtain government subsidies under a buyback program to help businesses hit by the outbreak of BSE (mad cow disease).

As a result of this fraud, the 51-year old company will disband at the end of April. All its part-timers have already lost their jobs. About 800 workers, the greater portion of the employees, are now being fired.

The workers complained about honest workers falling victim to wrongdoing they have nothing to do with, and protested against the arbitrary dissolution of Snow Brand Food and subsequent massive dismissals.

"We'll never give up our struggle for the safety of foods and job security," said Sasaki Noriaki, president of the Snow Brand Food and General Workers' Union. (end)