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School shun beef fearing mad cow disease

Date Posted: 2001-11-02

Over seventy percent of all the public elementary and junior high schools in Okinawa, 332 altogether, have spontaneously shied away from using beef for school lunches since the mad cow disease was found in Japan. However, as the scare seems to turn out to be groundless, about sixty percent of the schools are considering reversing their decision, the Prefectural Board of Education reported Friday.

Among the 332 schools, 12 are already serving beef, 73 will use beef for lunches starting November, and 109 schools will return beef in their lunch menus from December. The Board of Education received a notice from the Ministry of Education and Science assuring that infected cows are not in the market anymore and everything should back to normal. Ministry officials said that they strive to allay publicís fears about the disease by providing correct information.

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