March 07, 2007

Peko-chan mania

The sight of the week so far has been the ridiculous queues of people at the Kagurazaka Peko-chan Yaki shop.

Peko-chan is the mascot of Fujiya foods, a famous confectioner and cake-making company that goes back decades. In January, all Fujiya franchises were forced to suspend business after it was discovered that in one factory, batches of cakes had been made using expired milk and shipped out to shops. Further checks revealed other breaches of hygiene standards.

The company has now received an all-clear and the Kagurazaka shop (which bakes its produce instore, not using any products from the affected factories) reopened for business on Monday. The result has been a ridiculous surge in demand, with queues around the corner from mid-morning to early evening. The picture here shows the beginning of the queue, with the remainder (a further 50 or so metres long) around the corner ~ presumably so as not to disturb other shops.

Call me over-cautious, but I'm not sure I'll be joining the rush any time soon.

(Background story link in English here):

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