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Fukushima rice passes radiation tests for first time since disaster

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Hoorah!

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I love Japan and try to support their economy, but I wouldn't touch this rice with a 10 foot spoon.

15 ( +23 / -7 )

I pass.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

This is not something to celebrate, especially for poorer and local consumers who lack choice. The Consumers Union of Japan, Food Watch and other organizations have called for much lower acceptable levels than 100 becquerels per kilogram. Food Watch points out that jurisdiction on defining the health damage caused by radiation was shifted from the WHO to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), an organization that promotes the nuclear industry.

20 ( +25 / -5 )

No independent testing = lie + conflict of interest Moreover, the level mentioned is not one accepted onternationally. This is simply food poisoning.

14 ( +19 / -4 )

100 becquerels of WHICH isotope? Caesium-137? 134? Strontium-90? Nothing to cheer about AT all. Vested interests keeping 'their' income safe at others expense, namely their health. This rice WILL end up in schools. Nice.

18 ( +23 / -4 )

Oh sure I trust government testing. I'll pass thanks.

9 ( +13 / -4 )

“The fact that the amount of rice that does not pass our checks has steadily reduced in the last three years indicates that we’re taking the right steps,” What steps? I havnt heard of a single step taken, of how they are managing to lower the radiation from soil & water (in these rice fields). Does anyone have a link describing those steps, I would greatly appreciate it.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I love Japan and try to support their economy, but I wouldn't touch this rice with a 10 foot spoon.

...or chopsticks

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Plus, it's self cooking. No, really they have been working on this by removing the top layer of soil on many farms, replacing it with noncontaminated soil, and replanting. It will still be a long time before I'll ever try it, though.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Provide us with an independent study, then. Seriously, how dumb do they think we are? No doubt there's been all sorts of manipulation with the numbers & standards to make headlines. Smoke & mirrors.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Sadly, most Japanese people will think, "Oh, I saw it on TV, so it must be true." No way I will be eating this. How about some independent testing at least?

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Interesting. Rice from Fukushima is now safe to eat based on Japanese safety guidelines.

Does this mean it's been safe to eat for the past few years? Given that Japanese safety standards are still much stricter than the rest of the world...

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

I love Japan and try to support their economy, but I wouldn't touch this rice with a 10 foot spoon.

Oh, get over it. Send it to me, I'll find a good home for it.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Fukushima rice is very good for you.Tiny microscopic radiation particles cleanse and purify all the toxins in your body,eliminating the need for vitamin and mineral supplements.Fukushima rice is a natural way to stay young and healthy.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Sorry, but l'll pass on this rice.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Sorry but what were the reasons we were to trust govt testing..........?

That's right there isn't any reason to trust them, not thanks.

Also rice is harvested Aug/Sep & now in Jan its announced "safe"...................sorry just too many conflicts here to even begin to think about re-evaluating this topic!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

it ok Yoshinoya will still use Fukishima vegetables and probably rice in there food, and now theyve also raised there prices. probably the last place ill eat in Japan

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Gokaku.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"2012 and 2013 failed to pass radiation checks and had to be destroyed."

Considering the level of confidence and lack of international testing I rather believe they simply blended the rice with rice from another region to lower the average reading levels.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Oh do I empathize for the citizens of Fukushima, ALL of them because no matter where you live, you products and business prestige have been completely wiped out thanks to TEPCO and the boys club who's amakudari management practices have led to complete DE-beautification of a once wonderful place.

There will be NO demand for this rice nor other food stuff making it hard to give away and will only end up in Donki or other discount markets, welfare centers, homes for the elderly, orphaned, abused, physically and mentally handicapped, school cafeterias, basically the socially or economically disadvantaged and what isn't sold will end up as cattle feed which only continues the cycle.

Now to top it all off the boy's club want to get all the evacuees back in their radiation laden residences and neighborhoods so they can end the evacuee's monthly allowance they have been collecting. Oh sure, the cancer that now is starting to show up in children can't be directly linked to the Tepco plant but wasn't that the same argument the so-called experts said about the relation between lung cancer and smoking? Instead of cow-towing to the poor farmers, fishermen and the like, think about the big picture for once. Anyone with a smidgen of commonsense knows better and by trying to sweep all the radiation problems under the carpet won't change a thing! But the idea of spreading it under OUR carpets as a gesture of sharing the burden and to pacify the Fukushima residences is just downright stupidity. Ok, so you claim that this rice is safe as do you claim that the NO ENTRY zones are now inhabitable.

But may I make one suggestion to satisfy us NON-believers. You local, prefectural, and national government bureaucrats along with the politicians and business leaders who so adamantly rally behind the push to revise the devastated areas put YOUR money and family's health on the line and prove to us that it's safe. You feed YOUR kids and family this rice, meats and other products grown their and live in these radiation zones and then, only then can a clean bill of health be trusted by the likes of myself.

Yes Abe-san, so often and cheerfully you uses the term Beautiful Japan and continue to pledge your support to rebuilding the disaster affected areas and improving the lives of the Fukushima residents but it's just lip service and the people have caught on to this charade. Beauty is only skin deep and often is only for the purpose of appearances.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Also rice is harvested Aug/Sep & now in Jan its announced "safe"...................sorry just too many conflicts here to even begin to think about re-evaluating this topic!

I do not follow your logic. I don't know where you are from but in coastal Iwate, harvest runs September / October. Then its graded by JA (mixture content, grain size, etc.). I imagine that the additional testing that happens for rice from Fukushima takes quite a while. Lots of sample to work though. And not the number of labs, equipment, or trained technicians as you have for simple grading. If they had a result in October I'd be skeptical.

I will go out of my way to support these long suffering and twice-damned farmers by buying and consuming their produce.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

There are more radioactive isotopes in bananas than this rice.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Good, so long as they give consumers a choice and CLEARLY label the rice, neither of which they are strict about these days. My guess is it'll be just good enough for school lunches.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

With those 'consumer watchers' (aka anti nuke activist) also randomly testing the bags hoping for a positive, I suspect these rice are the most scrutinized in the world. So yeah. It's safe.

-15 ( +3 / -18 )

Brand name? Fukushima Hikari ?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@Sengoku: Shows how VERY little you know about radioactive isotopes. Shows how dangerous a little bit of supposed knowledge is.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Passing the safety test is one thing, but actually selling it is a different issue. Even if South Korea does resume imports I doubt if people will buy it. It's also hard to believe the results of this testing as there has already been cases of Fukushima produce being labeled as produce from other areas. No doubt, it will be sold off cheaply to schools and beef bowl restaurants.

Fukushima rice! Coming to a Yoshinoya near you soon!

2 ( +5 / -3 )

hoooorah !! please mark this Rice as "Made In Fukushima"

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Produce of FP" even

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Guess they are using similar device to check so guaranty tested on rice packaged with a nice thick paper package stopping all alpha radiation, and everything in less than 10 seconds per rice bags.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2012/08/26/national/fukushima-starts-radiation-checks-on-all-rice/#.VKttwysYMWA

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@tab You are all for eating radioactive rice? I hope that is some ironic black humor on your part otherwise....

If we want to help the farmers there,go and lease some land from them and get your own solar farm going-income guaranteed for 20 or so years for all....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wouldn't touch this rice with a 10 foot spoon.

We'll get you some chopsticks.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

LDP reelection followed by Fukushima rice getting the green light. NICE!

At least isotopes won't make the rice smell funny...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

. Shows how dangerous a little bit of supposed knowledge is.

Indeed it does. This rice has (allegedly) passed Japanese safety standards. Which are substantially higher than the US or Europe. Even if you sceptics are right and it hasn't actually passed the Japanese standards it would still be deemed safe by most other international measures.

I would love to eat what you all do. That's so completely free of carciogens that it registers zero on every single register. Especially given the nuclear power plants have been turned off which has led to more coal being burned which leads to all sorts of chemicals being released into the atmosphere and ultimately contaminating your food. You know, stuff such as arsenic, radioactive elements etc...

As was posted earlier (yet strangely removed) Japan is one of the most earthquake prone countries in the world. The threat of death from one of those earthquakes is substantially greater than from eating some rice which has radiation at levels below international standards.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

Yes, well.since.the.current govt.of.Abe san and his merry.LDP oyajis are all.so hot and.keen on.N restarts I,ll look forward to them leading.by example.and incorporating Fukushima rice into the daily menu in their taxpayer subsidised cafeterias. If it's safe there are.no.worries if they eat it daily, not.just during a 1 minute PR clip in front of the media as was the case now. Enjoy it boys! What's.that you say...? It can not.be.done as it would unnecessarily confuse the public and result.in.less.of this.delicacy being.available for the lower classes? Naruhodo.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The so-called "limit" is by no means without some radiation! That's just ridicilous! The government ought to be straightforward and much clearer in their wording. The citizens of Japan have not yet had any way to tell what the real truth is. Because radioactivity is a huge thing a residing Japanese citizen should be concerned about.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Talk about a deceptive headline: "Fukushima rice has passed Japan’s radiation checks for the first time since the 2011 nuclear disaster"

Makes it sound like all Fukushima rice failed to pass in prevous years, where the case is only a miniscule amount failed the tests.

I guess we need our hype to keep the news services busy, and the people of Fukushima tagged as unclean.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

"less than 100" -- not good enough. Give us the data.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Heda madness -"As was posted earlier (yet strangely removed) Japan is one of the most earthquake prone countries in the world"

I look forward for this line to feature prominently in your next discussion about the safety of N plant restarts.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

citizen2000,

Guess they are using similar device to check so guaranty tested on rice packaged with a nice thick paper package stopping all alpha radiation, and everything in less than 10 seconds per rice bags.

Caesium and strontium isotopes do not emit alpha radiation, so why should they search for it?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Food Watch points out that jurisdiction on defining the health damage caused by radiation was shifted from the WHO to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA),

You mean Food Watch lies. No such shifting of jurisdiction has taken place.

America’s Food and Drug Administration has a limit of 1,200 Bq/kg. The European Union limit is 600 Bq/kg

The so-called "limit" is by no means without some radiation!

There is no place on the planet without some radiation and typically bananas have about 100 Bq/kg.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Marcelito.

I've never hidden from the fact that Japan is prone to earthquakes. Nor have I hidden from the fact that Dai Ichi only suffered minor damage during the quake and the nearest nuclear plant to the epicentre, Onagawa, suffered no damage.

Not entirely sure what your point is to be honest.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

@heda - If you honestly wish to state that Fukushima Dai ichi meltdowns were minor damage than I can only conclude that you have some vested interest in nuclear power industry for saying so. Your statement is an insult to the thousands of misplaced N evacuees ( whether they ended up scattered around Japan or stuck in " temporary housing".) Perhaps you are one of the people who like to argue that the meltdowns were not caused by the earthquake but by the tsunami which of course is immaterial as the tsunami was caused by the quake in the first place.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Marcelito, You may want to actually read what I said. I said that Dai Ichi suffered minor damage during the quake. This is unequivocally true. The damage was caused by the tsunami. Which could have been prevented had the sea wall been higher or the back up generators been better positioned. It's clear that the damage could have been prevented had proper plans been in place. It's also clear that the nuclear plant closest to the epicentre suffered very little damage.

My statement is certainly not an insult to thousands of misplaced evacuees. If you read my posts you'd know that I have done a fair bit to support those people (and all of the misplaced evacuees).

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

My statement is certainly not an insult to thousands of misplaced evacuees. If you read my posts you'd know that I have done a fair bit to support those people (and all of the misplaced evacuees).

True. What's irritating is marcelito's initial comment about the Fukushima produced rice where these farmers are making an effort to get back on their feet with these efforts indicated on the article and yet he has the nerve to criticize others for being insulting. How rich.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

@heda - If you have done a fair bit of support of evacuees , then I honestly say good on you. Yet I stand by my statement , as I said it can be argued that the damage was done by the tsunami ( even that is in dispute though since its been reported power damage was done before tsunami arrived ) but the tsunami was caused by the quake in any case. Yes, you are right , the damage could have been prevented if proper plans were in place - yet the fact is, they were not in place and damage was done ( courtesy of Tepco culture of cutting corners). And the damage was not " minor" - I,m sure the evacuees and most of us living here in North Kanto would dispute that ( including the farmers )

Nigelboy - what's irritating is not my initial comment where I said if the Fusukshima rice is perfectly safe I look forward to the Diet members leading by example and putting it on their daily canteen menus. More irritating are attitudes by certain Japan experts who always take the side of J Government and J inc. no matter what. " How rich " is that? I look forward to those individuals letting us know how much of the Fukushima rice will they be personally consuming to support the farmers.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

You stand by your statement that it's insensitive to say that both Daichi and Onagawa survived the earthquake? Because they did. And yes had there been a bigger sea wall and better design - wholly Tepco's fault this wouldn't have happened.

I have said and will continue to say that there was minor damage done in the quake. This is a fact. I have, at no point, made the claim that there was minor damage caused by the tsunami. And I would appreciate if you could stop making that claim.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Heda - the tsunami was a direct result of the earthquake, which is also a fact. I,m not claiming anything else. There is strong evidence power was lost before the tsunami arrived. But no point arguing semantics. Earthquake + tsunami damage = meltdown = Fukushima rice and other produce is tainted for years to come. You want to eat it to support the farmers ...go ahead. I,d prefer farmers be properly compensated by the govt. for lost income and the rice stop being pushed into the marketplace under the guise of some supposed fuzzy "kizuna" concept.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

There is strong evidence power was lost before the tsunami arrived.

And where has Heda said it wasn't? But without the tsunami the backup generators would have solved that problem easily.

the rice stop being pushed into the marketplace

You mean the rice that is less radioactive than bananas or Brazil nuts, both of which I am sure are readily available all over Japan?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

"You mean the rice that is less radioactive than bananas or Brazil nuts, both of which I am sure are readily available all over Japan?"

Yeah right......I,ll take the bananas over Fukushima rice any day. Are you going to put your money where your keyboard is and start consuming Fukushima rice then? Please let me know how much of that rice you have purchased will ya, cheers?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I,ll take the bananas over Fukushima rice any day.

Fine get a higher dose of radiation and die from cancer, more power to you.

Please let me know how much of that rice you have purchased will ya, cheers?

Please tell me how and I can purchase some and I will let you know how it tastes, cheers!

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

I've not had the chance to eat Fukushima rice but I was given some nice fresh Minami-Soma cucumber in the summer of 2011. It would have been very insensitive of me to the locals, the victims of the tsunami, had I refused their kind generosity.

And as Mike said, had the back up generators not been flooded by the tsunami, there wouldn't have been an issue. Dai Ichi and Onagawa both survived the earthquake. To say they didn't is completely and utterly wrong. It's like saying that 18,000 people died in the earthquake and that would be insensitive.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

@Mike O' Brian - no problems, you can purchase some Fuskushima rice from JA Zen Noh Fukushima, http://www.fs.zennoh.or.jp/

So yes, please do buy a substantial quantity and tell me how it tastes. I,ll take the bananas any day, thanks & cheers.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@Heda: You 'claim' to read round this ongoing catastrophe? We don't believe you because if you did you'd know a monitoring post on the perimeter of the plant about 1.5 kilometers (1 mile) from the No. 1 reactor went off at 3:29 p.m., minutes before the station was overwhelmed by the tsunami that knocked out backup power that kept reactor cooling systems running, according to documents supplied by the company. The monitor was set to go off at high levels of radiation... Go figure.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

@UK9393: So you claim. How about a source for this information.

There are a number of reputable news sources that report this soon after the event, but every one of them states that the monitor may have malfunctioned. Yet I can't find a single reputable source that says the monitor actually detected an increased radiation level.

As anybody that works with electronics knows sensor do fail on occasion and it is possible the shaking from the quake may have damaged the equipment.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

As Mike said.

And what do you mean by this

'The monitor was set to go off at high levels of radiation... Go figure.'

Monitor's are set up to record data they don't go 'off'. Sirens/Alarms go off. Secondly define 'high'.

It's quite likely that the small amount of damage that was caused in the initial earthquake would have released a small amount of radiation. This would certainly lead to higher recordings on monitoring stations. But without actual facts and figures and total amounts 'high' means nothing.

And without solid quotes your claim is, well... go figure.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

@Heda: Heart monitors, life support monitors etc all have 'alarms'. As do many other genre of monitor.

@Mike, just Google that key information, there's a plethora of materials for you to read up on.

Interesting that neither of you mentioned this aspect of the events that unfolded but now, since it has been mentioned, you are suddenly well informed and have an expert position on this part of the catastrophes' facts. Incredible.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@UK9393, I have Googled it and that plethora of information seems to be a constant repeating of the same story by alarmists who obvious don't understand what they are talking about. That is why I asked for a reputable source. But thanks for letting me know there isn't one.

Where did either of us contend we were 'well informed' about this monitor? But thanks for the straw man. Incredible.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

@Mike] The Washington Post, Bloomberg, The Independent... etc, etc but no, let's listen to 'you'? No. Let's listen to the informed, unbiased and objective reason of truth and fact. Perhaps you missed it, you're not informed about the monitor, or monitors in general, as you didn't know monitors are built with alarms as part of their function.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Mike: You don't understand the contextual aspects of the straw man fallacy, because that's not the dice you got rolled.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Indeed they did report that. They also reported that '“We are still investigating whether the monitoring post was working properly,”

That was in May 2011. Have you any proof to show that the monitoring post was working properly. Don't you think that if the plant had been as badly damaged as you are trying to suggest that there would be a plethora of links in those mainstream news papers that you linked., Instead of them all relying on one quote from someone at Tepco.

The fact that they haven't followed up should speak volumes.

Just because you hope that the reactor was damaged in the earthquake doesn't make it true. The lack of evidence on the other hand should certainly be enough to suggest it isn't.

That and the fact that your one piece of evidence comes from the exact same source and one with a very clear caveat. And none of the reports say what that alarm was set to.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Well congrtualtions on FINALLY providing a link, three days after it was first requested. Though I suppose it's pretty arrogant that you would assume you wouldn't have to provide any links. Shame they aren't particularly useful though.

But then if we look at those reports we'll see that many come from the initial quote I posted above RE the 3:29 alarm - still waiting for any evidence/link/fact to prove that was working or what level 'high' was.

And then you have a load of links that takes you to one article. Had that been the smoking gun you seem to think it is, don't you think it would have had mainstream coverage?

Do you have any credible facts? you know - Bloomberg etc saying that the intial alarm was true with a reading of X?

There were definitely leaking pipes, again, never been in doubt. Nor has it been in doubt that those leaking pipes weren't of any major concern. All of it could have been managed. All of it was localised/

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Readers, no more bickering please. Focus your comments on what is in the story and not at each other.

In 2012 71 bags out of about 10 million tested exceeded the 100 Bq/kg limit. In 2013 38 bags of about 10 million bags tested exceeded the 100 Bq/kg limit.

In the US the limit is 1200 Bq/kg.

In Europe the limit is 600 Bq/kg.

Typically Brazil nuts, bananas, lima beans, carrots, potatoes and red meat ALL exceed 100 Bq/kg.

http://chemistry.about.com/od/foodcookingchemistry/tp/10-Common-Naturally-Radioactive-Foods.htm

The rice is as safe, or safer to eat than many other foods that no one seems worried about. The fear is cause by alarmists and ignorance.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

100 becquerels of WHICH isotope? Caesium-137? 134? Strontium-90? Nothing to cheer about AT all. Vested interests keeping 'their' income safe at others expense, namely their health. This rice WILL end up in schools. Nice.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

100 becquerels of WHICH isotope?

100 Bq total of ALL isotopes. Not that it matters as 100 Bq is completely insignificant.

And just who is "their"? The individual farmers of Fukushima? Yeah they are a major political force and can push through whatever is needed to keep their income safe. That must be why they haven't been able to sell their product for years.

Does being a professional alarmist pay well?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

100 becquerels of WHICH isotope? Caesium-137? 134? Strontium-90? Nothing to cheer about AT all. Vested interests keeping 'their' income safe at others expense, namely their health. This rice WILL end up in schools. Nice

Six times safer than Europe. Twelve times safer than the US. Who is keeping their income safe at the expense of others? Because if you're accusing the Japanese of that, then surely they should have dropped their safety levels to be the same as the rest of the world. Assuming you're from the UK and were born before 1986 you would have consumed food with much higher levels from either Chernobyl or Sellafield. And every other type of food you eat has carciogens of some type whether it be naturally forming or from pesticides or air pollution - something that's gone up as a result of turning off the nuclear power plants...

It possibly will end up in schools. It will also possibly end up in restaurants and houses and around the world. Because it's safe. Safe by any standard around the world. Unless of course you're a JapanToday contributor because then it's bad. Really bad because scientists says it's safe but what do they know? There was a comment earlier about how dangerous a little bit of knowledge is.

It's not dangerous, it's downright terrifying that three and a half years after this disaster people can still continue to promote false information.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

100 becquerels of WHICH kind of isotope? Caesium-137? 134? Strontium-90? Nothing to cheer about AT all. Vested interests keeping 'their' income safe at others expense, namely their health. This rice WILL end up in schools. Nice.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@UK9393 Like I told you 6 days ago when you posted the EXACT same comment.

100 Bq total of ALL isotopes. Not that it matters as 100 Bq is completely insignificant.

And just who is "their"? The individual farmers of Fukushima? Yeah they are a major political force and can push through whatever is needed to keep their income safe. That must be why they haven't been able to sell their product for years.

Does being a professional alarmist pay well?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

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