ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Food & Beverage

Pub chain in Japan to test doors and toilets for coronavirus

Watami restaurants to take disinfecting ozone bath with Tokyo outbreak resurgence

Watami's pubs serve a variety of food and drink, including Neapolitan spaghetti, a Japanese comfort food. (Photo by Fumihito Ishizuka)

TOKYO -- One of Japan's biggest operators of izakaya-style casual pubs will swab doorknobs, toilet seats and other surfaces to check for coronavirus in an effort to reassure customers.

Tokyo-listed Watami said Tuesday it will conduct polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, tests at about 160 pubs in the capital and surrounding areas over the next two months.

The initiative comes as Tokyo experiences an elevated level of new COVID-19 cases. On Tuesday, 54 new infections were confirmed, the fifth straight day over 50.

Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike announced new criteria on Tuesday for monitoring the spread of the virus, replacing an earlier alert system.

Watami also will disinfect pubs monthly using ozone, which is said to render coronavirus 99% inactive. The company, whose chains include its namesake pub and grilled-chicken purveyor Torimero, said it will become the first restaurant operator in Japan to use ozone to sanitize locations.

Watami plans to test pubs once a month starting in September. It may expand the testing initiative beyond the Tokyo area.

"We will make every effort at prevention so that not a single person is infected at our locations," a spokesperson said.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends July 31st

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media