According to the article, wealthy Thais were snapping up pears grown and harvested in Chiba for as much as 1,000 yen (US$12.67) a piece.
The event in Bangkok was attended by the governor of Chiba Prefecture, a former popular TV actor with little acting skills.
Wealthy Thais will be snapping up peaches from Fukushima, too.
From Sankei Shinbun (8/19/2012; part):
"Let's sell our pears in Thailand!" Chiba Fair in the supermarket in Thailand
Kensaku Morita, governor of Chiba who's visiting Thailand, attended the "Chiba Fair" at a Japanese supermarket in Bangkok to promote the popular produce from Chiba including pears. There are other countries already in the fruit market in Thailand. Chiba Prefecture plans to target the wealthy Thais to push Chiba's high-quality pears which are still in small supply in Thailand.
"Chiba Fair" is being held for 5 days at a subsidiary of AEON (headquartered in Chiba City) in part of Bangkok where the wealthy people live. In the special corner in the supermarket, various products from Chiba are displayed, including fruits, vegetables, and fresh fish.
On August 19, they cut up a whole tuna from Choshi on the stage near the special corner, and Governor Morita himself took the stage. He promoted the pears, saying "Chiba has the No.1 pears in Japan. Please try today, and see how delicious they are." He then handed out the pears grown and harvested in season in Shirai City.
The pears at the Chiba Fair were expensive, at nearly 1,000 yen per pear due to the seasonality, types of pears, and method of transportation. But there were customers who were buying them. The local importer says, "There will be a demand as gifts, even if they are expensive."
According to Chiba Prefecture's website, pears in Shirai City were tested in July this year to see if they contained radioactive cesium. The results were:
Monitoring test using the germanium semiconductor detector: ND (detection limit 2.2 Bq/kg for cesium-134, 2.5 Bq/kg for cesium-137)
Simple screening test using NaI scintillation survey meter (from 17 locations): ND (detection limit 17 to 19 Bq/kg)
Zero information on the volume (or weight) of the samples, how densely they were packed to be tested, and how long they were tested. (I guess the officials think citizens are dumber than them.)
AEON Group is headed by the older brother of the vice prime minister Katsuya Okada.