Yoshinoya is a household name in Japan for gyudon - beef served on a bowl of rice - and has 1000s of branches throughout the country and overseas, employing over 8,500 people in Japan alone.
Yoshinoya began life in 1899 as the Japanese took up beef-eating under western influence in the Meiji Period.
The first Yoshinoya restaurant opened in Nihonbashi in Tokyo before moving to the Tsukiji Fish Market after the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923.
The BSE crisis in the US caused Yoshinoya to suspend imports of American beef in 2004 and switch to pork (butadon) as a substitute.
Yoshinoya now serves beef from both the USA and Australia as well as pork gyudon.
Yoshinoya has restaurants in the following countries overseas: Australia, China (Hong Kong), Indonesia, Malaysia (no pork on the menu), The Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States (Arizona, California, Las Vegas, and New York City).
Yoshinoya's motto is "umai, yasui, hayai" (tasty, cheap and quick).
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