Japan bans Fukushima contaminated rice shipments

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 22nd November 2011

Japan’s government has imposed a ban on shipments of rice produced in certain parts of Fukushima after high levels of radioactive caesium were detected.

The announcement was made by the Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura, who said restrictions had been imposed on the shipment of rice produced in 2011 in former Oguni-mura in Fukushima City, where radiation leaks occurred after the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

Mr Fujimura said that the Japanese government had asked the Governor of Fukushima Prefecture to investigate the cause of the contamination and strengthen the testing of rice harvested in former Oguni-mura and surrounding areas.

The rice was detected to contain radiation levels in excess of the provisional regulation value of 500 becquerels per kilogram.

Mr Fujimura said, “There is absolutely nothing to worry about with respect to rice which has already been shipped. I would like to make clear that the (contaminated) rice has not been circulated.”