At least 87 kindergartners in four  kindergartens in Okazaki City were sickened after eating salmonella-tainted bento meals, according to a local media report.

Bento is a single-portion take-out or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine.

Image/CDC
Image/CDC

The children, aged 3 to 6, reported food-poisoning symptoms like fever and vomiting after consuming the tainted bento meals between September 21 and 28. At least 10 children required hospitalization.

The meals were prepared by Tokiwa Shyokuhin foods, a company with a history: they were responsible for producing meals that left 71 people with food poisoning in April 2016.

Officials of Okazaki said Tokiwa Shyokuhin was suspended from business operations amid fears there could be more victims.

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Salmonella is a bacteria that can be treated with antibiotics. Most people infected develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps between 12 and 72 hours after infection.

Salmonella symptoms usually last four to seven days, and most individuals recover without any treatment. In some cases, diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. In these patients, the Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream, and then to other body sites.

In these cases, Salmonella can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics. The elderly, infants, and those with impaired immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness.

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