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Your Sushi Rice Probably Had Rodent Poop In It, Lawsuit Says
A class-action lawsuit claims that rice in California may have been tainted with black mold and rodent droppings, among other disgusting substances. The complaint accuses Farmer's Rice Cooperative, which is responsible for over 20 percent of the rice crop in California, of knowingly mixing contaminated rice with edible rice, then selling the mix to grocery stores throughout California, ABC 7 reports.
The suit claims that "defendants store and maintain rice in such a fashion as to allow foreign substances such as insects, rodents and their soiling, bird remains, and black mold to be present in its processed rice."
In particular, brands New Variety, New Rose, New Crop, Specially Selected, Anniversary and Imperial Rose are mentioned.
Restaurant and stores say in the complaint that they thought what they were purchasing was all sushi-grade rice, but attorney Brian Kabateck says what they were actually buying may have contained only as much as 15 percent sushi-grade rice.
"Every single person who has been to a sushi restaurant in the last few years probably has had contact with this kind of rice," Kabateck said.
Farmer's Rice Cooperative has agreed to meet with the group, but has also called the complaint "baseless" and say they "look forward to the opportunity to vindicate ourselves in court," CBS LA reports.
If you've eaten rice in California in the last four years, you can contact the Kabateck Brown Kellner LLP at (213) 217-5000.