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Gov't eyes Fukushima rice ban after high level of cesium detected

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The government is expected to announce its first ban on rice sales in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster after samples of rice grown in Onami town in Fukushima Prefecture showed radioactive contamination above the government-set safety limit, officials said Thursday.

Onami is situated 57 kilometers northwest of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The findings will further worry nervous consumers, already fretting over the safety of domestic produce, despite its previous solid reputation.

Authorities in Fukushima Prefecture say rice grown near the stricken nuclear power plant contained cesium they measured at 630 becquerels per kilogram. The government safety limit is 500 becquerels.

"We are considering an instruction to restrict shipments of the rice from the area," Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said. "We would like to reach a conclusion as soon as possible."

He said the cesium was detected as part of the regular pre-shipment tests.

If a ban is imposed, it would be the first on rice shipments since the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was crippled by a massive quake and tsunami on March 11, spewing radiation into the air, oceans and food chain.

None of the 840 kilograms of rice produced at the farm this year has been shipped to markets, local officials said.

The final say on the ban is believed to rest with Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, who is expected to consult with a number of authorities, including over the issue of compensation for farmers.

A team of international researchers this week said elevated levels of cesium in soil in the region would "severely impair" local food production in eastern Fukushima.

The study, published in the U.S. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, suggested farming in neighboring areas could also suffer because of radiation.

Shipments of a number of farm products from affected regions were halted as the crisis unfolded and even those that were not subject to official controls have found little favor with Japanese consumers wary of the potential health effects.

The latest development is a setback for the Fukushima government which declared on Oct 13 that all newly harvested rice in the prefecture had passed inspection tests for radioactive substances and gave the go-ahead for the rice to be sold nationwide.

Radioactive levels in rice harvested in 1,700 locations in 48 municipalities outside the 20-km no-go zone around the stricken nuclear plant in the prefecture were below the government’s set limit of 500 becquerels per kilogram, prefectural authorities reported in October.

The highest level was 470 becquerels per kilogram in Nihonmatsu. The prefectural government bought that rice for research purposes.

Following central government guidelines issued in August, rice was checked twice for radioactive cesium before and after harvesting in 17 prefectures. Local governments tested to see if rice had been contaminated by cesium by collecting water samples from rice paddies.

© AFP/Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

77 Comments
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Wasn't really unexpected, especially with that international report the other day.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

"In Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said the central government had asked Fukushima prefectural authorities not to ship any rice from Onami until more thorough testing in the area can be carried out."

So 'more thorough testing' will result in DECREASED levels of radioactive elements? Just flat out STOP the shipments, and better yet the farming, as we all know full well it's getting through and into the food chain somewhere and somehow. People have been saying this would be the case for months, so no one should be surprised by this.

6 ( +8 / -3 )

No thanks! Just burn it.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

shocking...islander mentality when it comes to this is mind boggling...is there no common sense or logic in the japanese mindset?

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Seriously, anyone surprised by this? Talk about predictable!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Well, seeing as all that Noda eats is Fukushima rice, now you can eat your heart buddy. Saw this one coming a mile away.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So, the local gov passed it? Why is this not surprising?

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Osamu Fujimura said the central government had asked Fukushima prefectural authorities not to ship any rice from Onami until more thorough testing in the area can be carried out.

A typical Japanese government reaction. No more further testing is necessary.

J. Govt. needs to be BOLD and SWIFT to dispose them to protect Japanese consumers.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

not scary...i stopped eating Japanese Rice long ago...when Mikasa Food scandal came in light.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What percentage of Japan's rice production has been affected overall?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Actually, one positive way to look at this is that the testing procedures worked and the radioactive rice was identified before it could be shipped to market.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Adapted from Jerry McQuire: SHOW ME THE DATA!!

The highest level was 470 becquerels per kilogram in Nihonmatsu. The prefectural government bought that rice for research purposes

Seeing how whales catched for "research" by the Japanese ends up in dinner tables, I wonder which school/deportation center ended up with that patch.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Just want to add to my comments above.

Japanese govt has been watched by the world audience, especially environment activists and world media, how they are treating Japanese common people there who have been helpless. Forget about saving Fukushima rice. No more "Mottainai" culture here. DISCARD!.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Don't get me wrong, I'm happy that they are checking, but these levels aren't actually very high. The US FDA limit for caesium in food is 1200Bq/kg, so maybe the rice could be shipped over there :-)

http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodSafety/FoodContaminantsAdulteration/ChemicalContaminants/Radionuclides/ucm078341.htm

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Radioactive cesium, exceeding the safety level set by government guidelines, has been detected in rice grown in Fukushima Prefecture for the first time since the March 11 disaster, the Fukushima prefectural government confirmed Thursday.

No problem! All the Jgov has to do is arbitrarily raise the safety levels! Problem solved!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

630 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium has been detected from the rice grown and harvested in Onami District of Fukushima City in Fukushima. It was discovered only because one farmer asked the local JA to test his rice.

The video clip accompanying the NHK News says 630 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium from brown rice, and 300 becquerels/kg from white (milled) rice.

http://ex-skf.blogspot.com/2011/11/radioactive-rice-630-bqkg-cesium-from.html

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Make Tepco buy all of this rice!! Let them at Tepco enjoy contaminated rice from Fukushima!!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

America does have higher level standards, but I would rather prefer under 500. But it is not much higher. It is actually 600. Cesium-134 + Cesium-137=1200

http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodSafety/FoodContaminantsAdulteration/ChemicalContaminants/Radionuclides/ucm078341.htm

This information is very good although dated. Not for the average person to read either. Takes time to really analyze the charts.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The taxpayer paid for it to be grown, and now must pay for it to be destroyed?

Stop all farming in East Fukushima for 7 years. Deep plough every year, add potassium. Test again after 7 years.

I think America allows 1200 becquerels and the EU 1000 becquerels.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

600 for Cesium-134 and 600 for Cesium-137 to total for 1200. Check that link there Zichi.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

MaboDofulsSpicy,

thank you!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So that's 1200Bq/kg as I said, almost double the measurement of 630.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Okay, I might sound dumb here so please bear with me. The safety levels are higher abroad than Japan. What I would like to know is if any levels near 500 are actually being found in foreign food in Europe or America? I didn't have a clue pre March 11th about all this Bq/kg stuff....still don't actually but..... I do know from Zichi's very informative posts that some farms still cannot sell products but is the foodchain as a whole showing levels near 500. It's okay to compare countries but we have a situation in Japan where food from different sources is showing up as over the 500 limit. And a sick nuclear plant not yet tended to.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said the central government had asked Fukushima prefectural authorities not to ship any rice from Onami until more thorough testing in the area can be carried out.

What the hell are they to test. A seriously polluted junk from a seriously polluted area. What good or edible do they think can come from Fukushima?

Japanese seem to insist killing themselves.

The only way to dispose this lethal junk is to mislabel it in the old usual Japanese way and write on the rice cargo "imported rice". There is no way it could go through the scrutinizing check and or could ever enter the country. It would find it's way to the incinerator.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Japan_cynic

They are setting a limit for just Cesium 137, and not for both. So America is 600 where the Japanese is 500.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Samantha Zoe Aso - It has to do with the amount of tainted foods consumed. Most other country's diets are varied, whereas the Japanese eat rice three or four times a day. If one was to consume this tainted rice at that rate they would most certainly suffer from ailments related to the consumption. However, if one was to eat this tainted rice irregularly it is highly unlikely they would have any effect from consuming it.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Hmm.....Mainichi news reports say that at least one tonne of rice from Onami area has already been shipped to rice sellers... http://mdn.mainichi.jp/mdnnews/news/20111117p2g00m0dm013000c.html

It always starts with - "nothing contaminated was put on the market",before the truth comes out.... I think we all remember that`s what they said at first about Fukushima beef , vegetables...etc...a few months ago too. If they only discovered this because one farmer asked for his rice to be tested and the others didn,t , I bet there is other rice out there that was already shipped out and sold without being tested..

But as others have said - this doesnt really come as a surprise to most of us here, unfortunately.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Samantha Zoe Aso,

the thing is, most countries are not measuring radiation. In America there are some places with high levels from all the atomic bomb testing. In Britain, 25 years after Chernobyl, there are still 350 farms which are required to measure the radiation in foodstuffs before releasing them to market.

I think all farming east of Fukushima City should be suspended for 7 years.

All foodstuffs below the standards can still be exported into the EU.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

It was the farmer himself who requested a test be made by the JA.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

MaboDofuIsSpicy,

Where do you get your information from? All that I have read states that the Japanese limit of 500 is for all caesium, not just Cs-137. Thus, the US limit is double the measurement, as I said.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm shocked to read this news. The government told us Fukushima produce is perfectly safe, yet it turns out that it isn't. How could the rigorous government tests fail to spot this contamination? I expect it's an anomaly and we will soon be able to start feeding our children Fukushima rice again.

You know, only a fool would believe the results of government "tests" on radiation levels in food products. I certainly don't and we aren't buying any food products from Fukushima or the surrounding areas, no matter how many times some clown of a bureaucrat or minister claims they are safe.

Just look at the radiation levels in Fukushima and Koriyama cities: they exceed 5 mSv per year and are not safe for children, yet the government does nothing. Why would anyone expect that food grown in the surrounding areas would be safe? It isn't, and for the government to claim otherwise is ridiculous. Do they really expect us to swallow their lies, along with the contaminated food they falsely claim is safe?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"The latest development is a setback for the Fukushima government which declared on Oct 13 that all newly harvested rice in the prefecture had passed inspection tests for radioactive substances and gave the go-ahead for the rice to be sold nationwide."

Okay, I missed this part when I initially read the article, but I KNEW that they had at some point recently passed inspections before this article was printed. It is still UNBELIEVABLE they are only CONSIDERING banning it -- I'm sure it's simply a matter of not wanting to pay compensation to farmers... or at least paying as little as possible and selling the stuff dirt cheap for animal feed or under another label.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@ Disillusioned & Zichi. Thank you, as always for your answers. That is as I thought.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I wonder if sellers will be able to mix the contaminated rice with low contamination rice in order to reach the safey standard. Getting it down from 630 becquerels to 500 becquerels would not seem too difficult.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

All rice from Fukushima should be bought and turned into biofuel.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

We are considering an instruction to restrict shipments of the rice from the area, Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said. We would like to reach a conclusion as soon as possible.

Only restrict!!! What do you mean "Considering"? Have you any common sense? What is there to consider. Also what conclusion other than a total ban do you hope to reach...

You're all a disgrace and an embarrassment to the people of Japan. PLEASE make a SWIFT decision based on safety and pure common sense... Rant over.

4 ( +3 / -0 )

All rice from Fukushima should be bought and turned into biofuel

zichi - If it's turned into biofuel, then 100% of the cesium will come out of car exhausts or factory chimneys and pollute the atmosphere and streets!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

all they have to do is mix the " radiation rice " with the rest and " dilute " the radiation level to ' acceptable ' level.

problem solved.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The farmer should be commended.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm no nuclear scientist but it seemed obvious to me. Why did it take the government this long to figure it out?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

hello TPP - japanese safety-food indeed!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ayesha,

the caesium is low and not in all rice. When turned into biofuel it would be so low that it couldn't be measured.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

That's why I stocked up on last years rice. The perpetual head in the sand approach with Fukushima products is bizarre and amusing at the same time. Guess what folks, Fukushima products have more cesium than non-Fukushima products, plain and simple. Quit trying to force this cr*p on the consumer.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

zichi - All rice from Fukushima should be bought and turned into biofuel.

Um, no it shouldn't. that would only concentrate the cesium and release it into the environment. It should be labeled as, 'only eat once a month'.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Disillusioned,

sorry I don't agree with your comment that turning all Fukushima rice into biofuel would concentrate the caesium. The levels are low and not present in all rice. The exhaust gas from cars is more dangerous.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Measures required to improve nuclear security at Japanese nuclear facilities may cost up to Y19.4 billion ($252 million) per reactor, according to the government.

Most expensive measures are emergency steps like those required to maintain cooling, which would cost about Y11.8 billion, according to estimates by a committee under the National Policy Unit.

An additional Y1.3 billion would cover risks against explosions and protective equipment in the event of a severe nuclear accident. Other costs would go to establishing emergency power generators and other external power sources.

Costs for building new reactors would be higher as well. A 5 percent increase is expected, according to the report which estimates a Y420 billion bill would be necessary to build a new reactor with a capacity of 1.2 million kilowatts.

Should the risk of a new serious nuclear accident be included in the cost of generating nuclear power, its price would rise by up to Y1.6 per kilowatt hour, the same panel of experts announced last week. It estimated a nuclear disaster would cost about Y5 trillion.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The latest development is a setback for the Fukushima government which declared on Oct 13 that all newly harvested rice in the prefecture had passed inspection tests for radioactive substances and gave the go-ahead for the rice to be sold nationwide.

So this means (choose one): A. the inspection tests were poorly done. B. the inspection tests were correctly done, and someone lied about the results. C. the inspection tests were correctly done, the results were correctly reported, and somehow the rice got more radiation between the time of testing and the present time. D. something else - please explain __

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Farmboy,

I don't think anyone, the JA or the local government have tested every rice field and every sack of rice harvested?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

An interesting read from the American Food and Drug Administration.

http://www.fda.gov/newsevents/publichealthfocus/ucm247403.htm#sofar

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Quick judgement is probably bad judgement here. Only because the local soil in Fukushima is contaminated in many locations that doesn't necessarily mean that all rice grown there is contaminated at the same level. Since the testing is done with samples only, they might easily end up in a few cases with non-representative values. The statistical sample is small. Only because they do not find caesium (above the limits) in a bag of rice that doesn't mean that the neighbouring bag of rice is also below the limits. It is a very good thing that they actually found the contaminated rice now, because they must finally admit that it's contaminated.

They will probably mix strongly contaminated rice with slightly contaminated rice. The same things happened in Europe two and a half decades ago after the Chernobyl accident. I know at least about nuts where this had been done.

The limits in Europe had been increased after the Fukushima accident. The reason was to protect those who accidentally got their hands on contaminated foods from legal consequences and to allow those who import food from Japan to continue doing so with less trouble. After all, Japanese food is only a minor fraction of European dishes. Furthermore, each individual country has its own set of laws to protect its citizens. These laws are often stricter than European law.

Food with contamination above the limits can be found in some places in Europe. There is a Bavarian mountain range with high caesium levels and game and mushrooms often have high caesium levels there. Since it is known that the soil has a high cesium contamination, food is measured and all food that is beyond the limits is disposed of (at least in Germany).

The different limits for the contamination of food are rather arbitrary. There is no clear reason why it should be 500 Bq/kg in food. Any other number in the same order of magnitude is as good as 500 Bq/kg. Even though it doesn't pose a (measurable) health risk on occasional consumption, everyone should be free to decide whether she wants to take this risk. If rice contaminated near the limit or above is consumed regularly, a significant level of radioactive caesium will accumulate in the body. This might constitute a measurable health risk. I'd think the comparison to Russian roulette is not too far fetched.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Oh my god! I am shocked! Just shocked!! The rice isn't safe??!! But, but, but they said it was safe just a few weeks ago!

Rolls eyes. Yes support Fukushima and buy their contaminated crap!

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Why on earth they even planted rice in Fukushima this year is just stupid beyond belief, and not just rice.

People prepare to be dosed!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The government is expected to announce its first ban

What a proactive team we have in power ! The 2011 rice has been on sale for 2 or 3 months and they wake up now ? I don't think that rice would kill us more than stress from work, lazy lifestyle, food additives, pollen, sands from Chinese deserts, cigarette, alcohol, gas from cars or whatever pollution. But they are playing with people's nerves, definitely. The systematic delay to announce any problem, the recurrent announcements, that makes people worry about safety of any Japanese food, increasingly.

Farmboy, are they exclusive ? I'd check all boxes. Mistakes at each step.

I don't think anyone, the JA or the local government have tested every rice field and every sack of rice harvested?

They should have for 100% of Fukushima prefecture crops, and for the identified hot spots. They had no hurry, they could have taken 2 years to sort the rice and see which would go to make biofuel, which to feed cattle. Enough rice from further locations could be put on the market, without any shortage.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yeah 'proactive' just hasn't been the name of the game since March 11th. I know a triple disaster was unprecendented and nobody could have envisaged or wanted to envisage it happening but come on. Where's the think tank crew of Japan's elite brainpower? You know. Like in the movies where a situation happens and professors are suddenly pulled out of lectures and flown from helicopter pads to some top secret nine sanctum to discuss worse case scenarios! Forward thinking. You only need a few average brain cells to come to the conclusion that there is..der der......going to be a problem with food from that area. Central government should have imposed a ban on all products until the nuclear plant is brought under control and thorough testing completed. Instead, we have to endure an almost weekly farce of contradiction and ineptitude. It would be real funny if it didn't involve my kids.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Cos,

personally, I think all farming in East Fukushima, that is, east of Fukushima City, should be suspended for 7 years.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

They will probably mix strongly contaminated rice with slightly contaminated rice. The same things happened in Europe two and a half decades ago after the Chernobyl accident

So when I do my takikomi gohan in the rice cooker there will be highly radioactive grains of rice and benign grains of rice. I don't want those highly radiaoactive grains in contact with cells in my esophagus, duodenum, small intestine and large intestine. Such contact sharply increases the risk of cancerous cells developing. Maybe I should eat in the dark in the hope of finding the radioactive grains glowing.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

As Marcelito mentions above, they have discovered one ton of rice has already been sold on.

Also reported in NHK: http://www3.nhk.or.jp/daily/english/20111117_19.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Will Noda still eat Fukushima rice?

Politicians have been eating and drinking Fukushima produce on camera for months now, but Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda took it one step further when he announced last month that his staple from now on would be Fukushima-produced rice.

His Cabinet spokesman told reporters Thursday that this wasn’t going to change, even after the government issued a shipment ban on rice from Oonami district in Fukushima City after a batch of rice was found to be tainted with cesium. Shipment bans on food have become common in a wide area surrounding the Fukushima nuclear plant since March 11, but this is the first time that a restriction has been placed on rice

2 ( +2 / -0 )

At this point, more than 8 months later, there are still no laws requiring that contaminated food not be sold. On those rare occasions when contamination is accidentally found in food (nobody wants to find it), the government simply requests that the amount which has not yet been fed to schoolchildren at lunch be withheld from the market. If the legislature actually passes such a law, then the government will be required actually to check food and actually stop it from being sold. This is the last thing the government wants to do. So the legislature does nothing. The government is actually delighted to keep the people looking at Fukushima so they ignore Tochigi and Gunma, large parts of which are just as contaminated. Look at the government's contamination maps. What kind of checking, if any, is being carried out there?

The American standards may in some cases be more lax, but there is no nuclear disaster in America and the last above ground bomb tests were done quite long ago in deserts, not 200 kilometers from the largest city in the nation. Nobody expects that Americans will be eating contaminated food, drinking contaminated liquids, and breathing contaminated air everyday for the rest of their lives the way many Japanese will. The extent of contamination in Japan, to say nothing of that in the sea, is extremely widespread so the potential for ingesting large doses of caesium over time through a normal Japanese diet is very high. Therefore the Japanese standards should be much more stringent than they are.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan's strict standards on food are generally aimed to block low-cost foreign food imports and have been identified as a non-tariff barrier by food exporters.

Japanese regulators had assumed that if there was contamination, it would come from overseas. Clearly, the Fukushima accident wasn't anticipated, and so Japan's own regulations are now slapping the country in the face. How ironic.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Juts ban everything from Fukushima - food, cars, goods... Get the kids out of there, stop trying to spread the crap around the country. This just gets worse everyday. Though, sadly, not surprising.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

We should keep in mind that only a small fraction of the grain or produce is tested. The area in which the latest problem rice was found was initially determined to be clean by sampling. So we have no idea how much of what type of contamination is in anything sold in Japanese stores.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

From NHK, here's the explanation of what happened: 福島市大波地区では、先月、福島県による放射性物質の検査が2か所で行われ、いずれも国の暫定基準値を大幅に下回りましたが、これとは別に、農協が行った簡易検査で、国の暫定基準値を超えるコメが見つかりました。To summarize, two places (which I assume means two paddy fields) in the district were checked last month and found to be well under the national provisional limit, but the agricultural cooperative Nokyo did a "simple inspection" by which rice exceeding the provisional limit was found. I wonder how many of these Nokyo tests will be conducted henceforth and whether they will be even more "simple" so as to avoid further inconvenient findings. Rather than expand the inspection regime and do more intensive checks, the government is now trying to identify characteristics of the paddy fields from which the offending rice came so as to focus on that type of field for future inspections.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

“We are considering an instruction to restrict shipments of the rice from the area,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said. “We would like to reach a conclusion as soon as possible.”

Hey pawatan -- don't see your normal knee-jerk, defend Japan at all cost, reponse to this yet. Could it possibly be because the government has done, and continues to do, exactly what I stated in a post earlier this week -- that they refuse to reach any conclusions/make firm decisons from all this data they have? Preferring instead to bury their collective heads in the radioactive soil and hope all the problems will magically go away. Endangering the public's health in the meantime. And you feel good about that?

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

where's that cesium repellent rice when ya need it! lol

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Haven't and won't eat anything from Tohoku, Kanto. It simply was the correct course of action from D-Day. The maxim, 'Why take the chance?' wins the prize.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

herefornow, if you bothered to remember what I wrote weeks ago - and I know you read it, you love to read what I write, apparently - you'll see how I mentioned that it is impossible for any food testing regime to catch all bad food as the food is sampled from larger lots, not all can conceivably be tested. It's not reasonable to expect a perfect record in catching contaminated food, and it's a good thing that further tests were conducted and the contaminated food was caught.

But really, the clear answer is that food shipments from anywhere near Fukushima Daiichi need to stop (and the farmers losing their income compensated) as there's just too much contamination to risk ship.ping food. Use the fallout estimated the government provided months ago as a basis to decide the areas to be banned.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Instead of just eying it they should be doing it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

my family has some relatives i southern Japan so they ship rice to us.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So between the radiation in all the different types of food, water, and even in the air, basically Japan's screwed. Those with common sense has known this since the first measurements were released of the nuclear release from the plants.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I dony know if tjis has been said already, but why in gods name are they even concidering anything that is farmed in fukushima or near by prefectures. Wait, i finally understand, japan = illogical. As much as i hate it, im gonna learn to live with it

1 ( +1 / -0 )

But really, the clear answer is that food shipments from anywhere near Fukushima Daiichi need to stop (and the farmers losing their income compensated) as there's just too much contamination to risk ship.ping food. Use the fallout estimated the government provided months ago as a basis to decide the areas to be banned.

pawatan -- huh? Who responded to who's post? Think you have the shoe on the wrong foot. In any case, it is nice to see that you have finally come to your senses and agreed with what dozens of posters have stated for months -- just ban ALL food from Fukushima. And stop relying in what you yourself admit are inadequate tests to prove that it is safe. And that all the government has done by not reaching this CONCLUSION months ago, instead of just putting out a bunch of colorful maps, is needleesly endanger the safety of the public and cause them unneccessary worry. And you only consider me saying that "negativity" is because you knew it was right when first stated months ago, and now even more so.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

At this point, more than 8 months later, there are still no laws requiring that contaminated food not be sold. On those rare occasions when contamination is accidentally found in food (nobody wants to find it), the government simply requests that the amount which has not yet been fed to schoolchildren at lunch be withheld from the market.

No actual laws, but the US FDA uses the verb "ordered" rather than "asked" when describing what has been done in Japan:

On March 21, 2011 the Japanese Prime Minister ordered the Governors of the affected prefectures of Fukushima, Gunma, Ibaraki, and Tochigi to stop the distribution of spinach and kakina (a local Japanese vegetable) into the market, and ordered the Governor of Fukushima prefecture to stop the distribution of raw milk.

On March 23, 2011 the Japanese Prime Minister ordered the addition of flowerhead brassicas, head leafy vegetables, and non-head leafy vegetables to the group of products previously restricted from distribution into the market on March 21, 2011. The Governor of the Ibaraki prefecture was also ordered to stop the distribution of raw milk and fresh parsley. This means no such products may lawfully be placed in the domestic or export markets.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

herefornow

What are you talking about? Don't confuse your incessant negativity with my realism. I am pro-Japan on many (most) things but if there is something to criticize, I criticize. I don't know the last time you said anything positive about Japan, especially since you left.

I didn't say anything in my post that was different from what I had said before. And I notice your rant about Japan not doing anything regarding rice shipments from Fukushima was posted after the government had already banned shipments.

And that all the government has done by not reaching this CONCLUSION months ago, instead of just putting out a bunch of colorful maps

So know you are freely admitting that the government has been releasing information? You were recently claiming that they had not done so. But this conclusion was reached months ago, anyway - food shipments were banned, it was just reversed later. Clearly this was not the best idea.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"the final say on the ban is up to Prime Minister Noda" - we're screwed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

****Japan_Cynic...no thanks, we don't need any help getting tainted food in the US....there seems to always be some kind of recall here, BUT at least they recall it here

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've just heard that Takashimaya department store sells only food (and I guess that also means rice) from the Kansai, where they are originally from. Is that true? I may have to go check on their produce soon. Here in Tokyo, I see a lot of produce from Ibaraki (which is questionable)...AND A LOT OF "NIHON KARA", which to means screams "high radiation mixed with lower radiation". And that means I do not buy it. This is going to be the story for a long time, I fear.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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