Product Safety and Liability Law in Japan: From Minamata to Mad Cows

By Luke Nottage | Go to book overview

1

'Re-orienting' Japan and its law

World markets remain awash with manufactured products from Japan, despite its 'lost decade' of economic stagnation over the 1990s. Indeed, export markets have been Japan's lifeline preventing outright depression, and some now argue that they provide a model for Japan's resurgence over the medium term (Katz 2003). Japanese goods also retain a reputation for excellent design and reliability. Yet since mid-2000 a series of scandals has revealed serious quality control problems. They have afflicted jewels in the crown of Japan's export industries, as well as less competitive sectors focused on domestic markets. This book outlines some perspectives for appraising such developments, and issues of product safety more generally, comparing especially Japan's Product Liability Law (the 'PL Law', No. 85 of 1994). Before setting out the general approach and plan for this study, some conceptual challenges are illustrated by sketching in more detail the recent problems, and the conflicting perspectives offered on them by the media and academic commentary on Japan, its products and consumers, and its legal system.


Summers of living dangerously

The spate of product safety problems revealed in Japan from mid-2000 involved both staple foods like dairy products and beef, increasingly supplied from abroad, and familiar consumer durables such as automobiles and television sets for which Japan has developed an international reputation for product quality. Accordingly, they attracted extensive attention in the domestic and foreign media.

At 10.50 am on 27 June 2000, for example, health authorities in Osaka learned that a family was showing food poisoning symptoms after consuming low-fat milk produced by Snow Brand, the company with the largest market share among Japan's dairy food processors at the time. Despite urgings by various authorities, it took more than 53 hours for Snow Brand to go public with a recall. The delays exacerbated the problem, resulting in 14,849 victims (13,420 of whom had a causal relationship established between consuming Snow Brand products and developing the symptoms). Although no deaths have been reported, this makes the accident one of the biggest food poisoning cases in Japan's history, rivalling the arsenic contamination of milk produced by Morinaga in 1955 and

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Product Safety and Liability Law in Japan: From Minamata to Mad Cows
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations viii
  • Preface ix
  • Acknowledgements xii
  • Abbreviations xiv
  • 1 - 'Re-Orienting' Japan and Its Law 1
  • 2 - The Still-Birth and Re-Birth of Product Liability in Japan 23
  • 3 - Comparing the Pl Law with Other 'strict Liability' Regimes in Europe, Australia and the Us 70
  • 4 - The Pl Law in Action 154
  • 5 - The Future of Pl in Japan 202
  • Appendix A 213
  • Appendix B 215
  • Appendix C 223
  • Appendix D 229
  • Appendix E 251
  • Notes 255
  • Bibliography 274
  • Index 304
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 311

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.