Monday, October 3, 2011

Tochigi's Tactics to Sell Its Beef: Make Children Eat to "Prove" It's Safe

One of the very popular propaganda campaigns by the governments is to use children to appeal safety. Since the national government, prefectural governments, municipal governments all do it, producers and wholesalers must feel they are not just allowed but encouraged to do the same, and they join in with the governments to exploit small children so that they (think they) can sell their stuff, whatever they are peddling.

Here's the latest from Tochigi Prefecture, where radioactive cesium in the beef exceeded the national provisional safety limit by wide margin and the shipment of the meat had been halted in August, as reported cheerfully by NHK News Japanese (Tokyo Metropolitan version) on October 3, 2011. The link has since been deleted, but the article has been copied at Tokyo Brown Tabby's site, from which I quote in full:


PR of Tochigi Beef using school lunch


To encourage consumers to buy and eat beef made in Tochigi Prefecture, where the shipment ban has been lifted, Kanuma City in Tochigi Prefecture served "hashed beef over rice" as school lunches in the city's elementary schools.


Radioactive cesium exceeding the national provisional safety limit was detected in the beef from cows raised in Tochigi Prefecture, and the shipment of the cows was halted for 3 weeks in August.


This school lunch using the local beef was a PR campaign by Kanuma City and the local JA (agricultural producer co-op) to appeal the safety of the Tochigi beef. Total 5,000 "hashed beef over rice" dishes were served in 8 elementary schools, featuring the local beef.


In the classroom of 1st graders at Higashi Elementary School, Kanuma's Mayor Shin Sato and local cattle farmers joined the 39 pupils for the lunch.


Children looked happy to eat the dish with beef, which hasn't been used in lunch [since radioactive cesium was detected].


One girl said, "The meat was so tender and delicious. I'd like to eat more".


Yoshio Kawarai, cattle farmer, said "I am glad that children were looking forward to eating the beef. We will continue to raise safe cows, so we want them to feel safe eating the beef".

Needless to say, Tabby is incensed. I feel dizzy with high blood pressure translating the text of the news. They served 1st graders with possibly radioactive beef, and the mayor of the city and cattle farmers were there with the small children to make sure they all ate lunch.

Well, was it radioactive or not? No one will ever know, because Tochigi Prefecture has clearly decided to go Miyagi Prefecture's way - that is, if the measurement is below the provisional safety limit of 500 becquerels/kg for radioactive cesium, the government does not bother to tell you how many becquerels.

Here's Tochigi's latest "test" of its beef, on October 3, 2011. Note the right-most column, which shows the amount of radioactive cesium detected. It's all "暫定規制値以下" - "Below the provisional safety limit". It could be ND, it could be 499, but no one's supposed to know and they don't bother to tell.

The same arrogance has been shown by the Miyagi governor who declared that no one needs to know the detailed number as long as it is below 500 becquerels/kg for radioactive cesium.

As Professor Kunihiko Takeda said in his October 3 post, the governments of all levels are in it, the producers and sellers are in it in exploiting small children so that they can "sell" radioactive foods, they shout down the mothers who want to feed their children with radiation-free food, while the fathers strangely look the other way. Professor Takeda pleads with the fathers to join the fight and join the mothers, but the prospect looks bleak so far. Pro-nuke propaganda since 1991 has been a resounding success with the fathers. (Links are in Japanese.)


Anonymous said...

You should put this video on the front page. Unbelievable!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, and see how Osamu Fujimaru and Yukio Edano have to keep themselves from laughing in that video? What absolute filth.

Atomfritz said...

Similiar covering-up by the state authorities after the Chernobyl accident led to the setup of various "Unabhaengige Strahlenmesstellen" (independent radiation measurement laboratories) at several universities all around the country, for example.
They daily supplied the media with current becquerel data of the most important foodstuffs, which in were published daily in several newspapers.

I wish the japanese universities would contribute their laboratory capabilities to create publicity about the true contamination situation.

But I fear most Japanese scientists lack the civil courage to do such.

Atomfritz said...

Edit: last post only regards what happened in West Germany from 1986 on.
(Just to make this clear. In most other European countries no radiation data was published by the authorities and mass media at all, just saying there is nothing to worry about...)

Greyhawk said...

This made your blood pressure go up. It turned my stomach. It is truly sickening. The invisible hand of the free market in Japan is radioactive.

Anonymous said...

The power of the people is in voting and creating local associations that must unite into one ... new party.
The power of people is in consuming or not consuming stuffs that do not satisfy their needs.

It seems true that every Japanese individuals carry a representations of the others leading to hard to believe feelings such as "If I panic ,,, then milliions of others will". People fear that if they complain , every body will complain ... but they should trust that this is also what the politicians and industrials fear the most. There is a very simple and peaceful movement of counter power in Japan through consumers awareness.

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