Friday, November 25, 2011

Radioactive Rice: 1270 Bq/kg of Cesium from Rice in Onami District, Fukushima City

630 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium discovered in the same district on November 16 was treated as "exception", with researchers from an august university (Tokyo University) weighing in with their theory on how "exceptional" the topography of that rice paddy was.

So much for that.

Now the maximum radioactive cesium from the rice in the district is 1270 becquerels/kg. From a different rice paddy.

Yomiuri Shinbun (11/26/2011) reports that radioactive cesium exceeding the national provisional limit was found in rice grown and harvested at 5 more farms in Onami District, Fukushima City in Fukushima Prefecture. But rest assured, as we are supposed to believe they haven't been sold in the market.


As radioactive cesium exceeding the national provisional safety limit (500 becquerels/kg) had been detected in the rice harvested in Onami District in Fukushima City, Fukushima Prefecture announced on November 25 that the rice harvested in 5 additional farms in the same district was found with radioactive cesium exceeding the provisional safety limit. The maximum was 1270 becquerels/kg.


The rice is either stored in the warehouses at JA or at the farms, or has been given to the farmers' relatives. It is not being sold in the marketplace, according to the prefectural government.


The Fukushima prefectural government has been testing the rice (4752 bags) from all 154 rice farms in the district. So far, 864 bags from 34 farms have been tested. Of those, 103 bags from 5 farms exceeded the provisional safety limit. At the farm that had the rice with 1270 becquerels/kg cesium, all 24 bags were found with cesium exceeding the provisional safety limit, and the minimum was also high at 970 becquerels/kg. At another farm, the rice tested between 540 to 1110 becquerels/kg.

Professor Kosako's "chaos in the harvest season" did not come, simply because the Fukushima prefectural government carefully avoided testing the soil or the rice from what they may have known as high contamination areas. (More in the next post.)

Now the harvest season is over, the new crop of rice from Fukushima is being sold and served all over Japan, and PR campaigns by TV celebrities and politicians are being mounted, again equating "good tasting" as "being safe". School children in Koriyama City in Fukushima Prefecture are being served with the rice harvested in Koriyama City (see my post); part of the city is just as badly contaminated as part of Fukushima City.

Chaos did not come, thanks to the selective measuring; instead, a resignation prevails.


Anonymous said...

I guess the baseless rumors weren't so baseless after all.

Come on, think about it, there were explosions and the reactors are still leaky. You don't need a Tokyo University degree to figure out the surrounding areas are contaminated for the time being.

Too bad the farmers have to jump through the hoops to get their compensation.

Anonymous said...

@ Primavera, the article says Fukushima has been testing the rice at all the farms. Do you know if the testing of all farms by Fukushima City is a reaction to the high cesium originally found there? I ask because earlier it was reported that something like only two farms per town were being tested. Just wondering if Fukushima started testing all of the farms due to the high radiation, or if they were testing all farms as a matter of course.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

The Fukushima government is testing all the farms in this particular district, only because 630 becquerels/kg was found. Otherwise, they wouldn't have done anything at all. Remember that 630 bq/kg cesium rice was found only because the farmer had it tested.

The original testing was 2 bags per town.

Fukushima is NOT testing all rice farms anywhere else, except for some unnamed locations in 4 particular cities.

gr81 said...

Given the recent examples of Japanese government DISHONESTY, I would not be surprised if they decided to "mix-n-serve" the rice like they do earth and debris!

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@gr81, they already do mixing of rice from different regions, including this year's crop. Japanese rice farmers and distributors will tell you that.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know how much of the rice will be exported? Before this event, was any rice from Japan exported? Having a very nice lunch in Taiwan today (I'm a visitor) and wondered how much or if any of my meal had traces of Fukushima in it.

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