Friday, November 4, 2011

Koriyama City in Fukushima to Feed School Kids with Local Rice Harvested This Year

Did anyone say in the comment section that it was a duty of adults to protect children? I guess not in Koriyama City, which is located in high-radiation "Nakadori" (middle third) of Fukushima Prefecture and where 500,000 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium was found in the rice hay.

The city will start using this year's rice harvested in the city in the school lunches, starting next Tuesday. Since the new rice harvested in Fukushima is all cleared for shipping as the sampling test has proven it is "safe", it is just a matter of time till it's fed to the most vulnerable and without voice - children. Just as the Fukushima government, headed by THAT governor, has been pushing ever since declaring "safety" on October 12.

Fukushima Chuo TV news (11/4/2011) via Nippon TV:

郡山市は、来週から市内でとれた新米を学校給食に使うことにし、きょうは、放射性物質の検査体制を保護者らに説明した。

Koriyama City has decided to use the new rice harvested in the city for school lunches starting next week. Today, the city explained the radiation detection system to the parents.

郡山市は、コメを出荷するJA郡山市に対し、放射性物質の自主検査を義務付けたうえで、来週の火曜日、8日から、市内でとれた新米を学校給食に使う。

Koriyama City will require JA Koriyama, who will ship the rice, to conduct voluntary testing of radioactive materials, and will start using the city's newly harvested rice in school lunches starting Tuesday November 8.

きょうは、市や保護者ら50人ほどがJAを訪れ、検査の工程などについて説明を受けた。

Today, about 50 parents and the city officials visited the local JA, where the JA officials explained the testing procedures.

JAでは、玄米と出荷前の精米それぞれについて、放射性物質が含まれていないかを検査する。

JA will test both brown rice and polished rice before shipping, for radioactive materials.

なお、県内のほかの市町村では、来月から新米に切り替えるところが多く、どこでとれたコメを使うかなどを検討しているという。

Also, other municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture will switch to the new crop of rice starting next month. They are currently deciding on whose rice to use.

Pressure is of course on to use the rice harvested in Fukushima, which even some rice farmers wouldn't feed their family members with (see my post here, bottom third).

For consumers outside Fukushima Prefecture, there is no way of telling whether a bag of new rice contains Fukushima rice, if it is a bag of "blended" rice. There is no requirement to list the places of origin if the rice from different locations are blended. All the label will say is "made in Japan".

Convenience store "bento" and "onigiri" is very likely to feature rice from Fukushima. Some stores at least prominently declare that they use Fukushima rice.

While consumers can still avoid, if they want to, Fukushima rice by avoiding "blended" rice and avoiding buying bento at convenience stores, school children cannot.

A nation is utterly broken when the leaders think nothing of using children as propaganda tools, and excoriate those citizens who dare raise their voices. It's not just Fukushima Prefecture either.

No end in sight of Japanese nuclear horror.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's also a way to use social pressure to get people to accept the contaminated food. Almost no one is going to go into a restaurant and ask, "where did your rice come from?" and at school, as we've seen before, the kids are sometimes forced to eat all their food and have no option of bringing lunches from home. These are the ways to get rid of the rice in places where there are no other choices or where it's least likely to be questioned.

Dennis Riches said...

We must note that it is not just local governments perpetuating this poisoning.The IAEA, which speaks for the UN, which speaks for the international community, is complicit in all this. The IAEA has not condemned these practices, and it has endorsed the optimistic view that little cesium makes its way from soil into the rice grains.

Anonymous said...

Take a look at this interview and make it viral

http://youtu.be/Uj8Pl1AiOuA

Wade Allison a nutjob who says the Japanese safety levels are too low ! and that fear of radiation is worse !

Anonymous said...

another curious decision from JP. they decide to ban beef sales from Fukushima, but the day before release a test showing Fukushima Beef is extremely safe limit. seems like the rice farms won some sort of battle w/ beef farmers

DD said...

I have two interpretations for you

(1) the decision makers don't have a clue about the dangers and risks of consuming radioactive materials and are simply concerned with getting the economy moving again

(2) it's time to put into practice the long term survey of medical issues from ingested radioactivity in a captive and demographically valid target population

But remember: best rule is to assume stupidity unless there is strong evidence for conspiracy.

Anonymous said...

In light of the Rice Traceability Law that went into effect in July 2011, I don't think that this blog entry is accurate. My understanding is that all rice products, which includes not only products in which the rice "still looks like rice" (riceballs, prepared lunches) but also sake, rice crackers, chocolates with "crispies" in them, etc. are all required to list the rice's prefecture of origin, as of July 2011.

This had nothing to do with the Fukushima situation. If I recall correctly, it was a result of the passing of "unsaleable" rice off as "saleable" a couple of years ago. By coincidence, the law entered into force this summer.

Mauibrad said...

Koriyama City, killing their future... When will adults learn to think for themselves?, or maybe they are already too much.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@anon at 11:06PM, your understanding is correct if the rice is from a single origin, like Fukushima Prefecture. If blended, no such requirement. Distributors are already mixing Fukushima rice with rice from other locations, and consumers are already finding bags that says "Made in Japan".

FYI, http://ex-skf.blogspot.com/2011/10/dilute-and-sell-radioactive-tea-blended.html

DD said...

Re
"A nation is utterly broken when the leaders think nothing of using children as propaganda tools"

Exactly

My condolences to yourself, your family and friends, and those of your countrymen and women who have been thoughtful, and brave, in supporting you, in giving you the support you needed to continue with this web log. Thank you so much for your work.

A society is defined by how it treats its most vulnerable.

A society that has chosen deception is not sustainable.

Your own country may be the most obvious casualty of this but it is not alone. Many other nations exhibit these behaviours and have helped lead us all into this unending calamity.

It is not much of a hope, but there is still hope that your people will learn what is better to do, and other peoples may follow.

no6ody said...

Our real enemies are not those living in a distant land whose names or policies we don't understand; The real enemy is a system that wages war when it's profitable, the CEOs who lay us off our jobs when it's profitable, the Insurance Companies who deny us Health care when it's profitable, the Banks who take away our homes when it's profitable. Our enemies are not several hundred thousands away. They are right here in front of us
- Mike Prysner, for http://www.ivaw.org/ speech of 5 min at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akm3nYN8aG8

Our whorium-infected corporate owners have decided that many children's health is not going to interfere with profits, it seems. Perhaps if they get sick, more profits will result!

Anonymous said...

At Anon 4 11 7.49 PM
Great pick ! 100 milli-sievert a Month !
LOL. What a moron. Did you notice how he's got the shakes when he grabs twice his cup of water? Might need a rehab.
Actually, he's got nothing to fear from radiations, he's already toasted with booze.

Anonymous said...

This comment is a little bit of topic. It is BBC movie about Chernobyl.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiCXb1Nhd1o

Anonymous said...

Terrible news... it makes me sad to read this.

Anonymous said...

Parents have a choice. To suggest otherwise is a fallacy. We do not allow our children to eat school lunches we provide all their school meals. Our children eat only what WE provide. Safety.

Ed M. Koziarski said...

I think you need to make a distinction between Fukushima rice and contaminated rice. Much of the rice grown in Fukushima has been tested and found to have contamination levels below the detection limit (typically 20 becquerels per kilogram), while some rice grown outside Fukushima has tested higher than that. Contamination does not follow prefectural borders, and the absorption rates vary based on soil composition and other factors that are still being understood. Of course, children must be protected from contaminated food. But equating Fukushima with contamination does not promote safety, it promotes oversimplification, and a combination of alarmism and a false sense of security. All the food needs to be tested and labeled with the test results. Where it's from is only part of the picture.

Anonymous said...

So what? Feeding the kids the rice means they will die sooner than later. The whole country is radioactive anyway...everyone is going to die from these nuclear disasters!

The adults that want to feed these kids the radioactive rice are murderers and the adults that are letting this happen are accomplices to murder.

So what, the parents don't care, why should I?

Mike said...

@Ed M. Koziarski --

(1) It seems contamination levels are sufficiently high throughout Fukushima prefecture to justify banning sale of its rice. The fact that rice from other areas is also contaminated does not mean rice from Fukushima is safe.
(2) It is not true to say that "[m]uch of the rice grown in Fukushima has been tested." Only scattered samples have been tested. Concluding that Fukushima food products are "mostly" safe based on limited testing is where the real "oversimplification" occurs. Large-scale testing of rice is not economically feasible.
(3) Testing by the government and the food industry is suspect, since Japanese political and business institutions have repeatedly under-reported emission and contamination levels.
(4) The government and academic institutions have established a pattern of holding back negative news for extended periods, often until it is too late for the populace to do anything to protect themselves.

Under these conditions, it is no surprise that there is no market for rice if it is disclosed that the rice comes from Fukushima. Faced with the choice between "oversimplifying" and concluding that the rice might be safe, despite the factors above, and "oversimplifying" that some of the Fukushima rice will be contaminated, they prefer to minimize their risk and avoid it. Schoolchildren are not able to make this choice for themselves.

Mike

Aigars Mahinovs said...

Rice seeds do not absorb radioactive isotopes. Really it is one of the safest foods to grow on contaminated soil. All the Iodiene and Cesium is concentrated in the leafes and the rice itself is perfectly safe to eat. 20 Bq/kg is less than typical grain in Europe.

There is background radiation all around us. Everything IS radioactive. Human body has radioactivity of around 2000-3000 Bq on average from Carbon 14 and Potassium 40 that we get from all our food and have always been getting even before we found out about radioactivity. Thus human body has many mechanisms to cope with it. Only when the radiation dose exceeds the capability of those internal mechanisms by high exposure in a short time any damage has been observed.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@Ed M. Koziarski, I also add to what Mike said:

Rice testing in Fukushima was 2 or 3 samples per town and village. By no means it is anywhere near comprehensible. Sample size was 200 grams, I think. I saw an NHK news clip where a Fukushima official was waving a scintillation survey meter over plastic ziplock bags with rice for a few seconds each. If a sample passed this test, then it didn't go through further testing using Ge.

A farmer next to the farmer whose rice tested 500 Bq/kg of radioactive cesium was able to ship his rice, which was never tested.

When full information about contamination is not given, I don't think it is oversimplification for consumers to suspect radioactive materials in the produce from the most contaminated prefecture and take precautionary measures.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@Aigars, rice seeds DO absorb radioactive isotopes. Rice grown in soil from Iitate-mura, Fukushima with 50000 Bq/kg of cesium had over 2,000 Bq/kg of cesium in the rice grains.

Anonymous said...

"...and Potassium 40 that we get from all our food "

the radioactive banana crap again

Anonymous said...

8:59,
"seems like the rice farms won some sort of battle w/ beef farmers"
That is probably more true than we know at this remove.

10:31,
"remember: best rule is to assume stupidity unless there is strong evidence for conspiracy."
Only an acceptable line of thought if "stupidity" is defined as a process performed upon others consciously.

DD said...

@Anonymous at 10:31 in connection with
"remember: best rule is to assume stupidity unless there is strong evidence for conspiracy."
said, "Only an acceptable line of thought if "stupidity" is defined as a process performed upon others consciously."

Exactly, you have nailed it. We can now safely continue down the Conspiracy road.

Just needed that little bit of tidying up to make the point, thanks.

DD said...

So we are now going to carefully monitor the emergence of large scale radiobiological surveys over time ...

Anonymous said...

11:54,

And there's a third path, one called 'stupid conspiracy', the one most trodden ..

.. and thereafter follows a certain LOL.

Anonymous said...

Just market it as "Plutonium Rice"...**TASTY!!**

People will get it mixed up with "Platinum" and think it's a high-class, precious metal grade of Rice!! I hear that Plutonium is very expensive, as is cancer treatment. In fact, I think life-threatening cancer is more expensive than RUNNING FOR YOUR LIFE while you still can!!!

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