Fish near Fukushima at 4000% above Codex Alimentarius limit for radioactive I-131 — Yet US says eating it poses NO health risk

Published: April 5th, 2011 at 6:10 pm ET
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Japan Sets Radiation Standards for Fish, New York Times, April 5, 2011:

Japan’s government announced on Tuesday its first radiation safety standards for fish, hours after the operator of a crippled nuclear power plant said that seawater collected near the facility contained radiation several million times the legal limit.

The new standards were announced after a sample of kounago fish, or sand lance, that was caught last Friday off the coast halfway between the plant and Tokyo was found to have high levels of radioactive iodine 131.

The small fish had 4,080 becquerels of iodine 131 per kilogram (2.2 pounds). The new standard allows up to 2,000 becquerels of iodine 131 per kilogram…

Read the report here.

Radioactivity Found in Fish as Tepco Purges Nuclear Plant, Bloomberg, April 5, 2011:

Radioactivity in fish exceeding health guidelines was detected for the first time off northern Japan as Tokyo Electric Power Co. dumped tainted water into the ocean to gain control of its crippled nuclear plant.

Cesium radioactivity in sand-lance caught south of the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant was 526 becquerel per kilogram, compared with a health ministry standard of 500 becquerel, Makato Osodo, of the fishing policy division of the Ibaraki prefectural government, said in a telephone interview. …

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Food Contaminants, Hong Kong Centre for Food Safety, April 1, 2011:

[Emphasis Added]

What are the criteria adopted at present in testing the level of radioactive contamination in Japanese food products, and the measures to be adopted when some food products are found to have a level of radioactive contamination exceeding the normal standard?

CFS currently adopts the standards laid down by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, which are international standards, in the Guidelines Levels for Radionuclides in Food following Accidental Nuclear Contamination in testing the radiation levels of food. Relevant radionuclides include iodine-131 (100 Bq/kg), caesium-134 and caesium-137 (1,000 Bq/kg), etc, which are most closely associated with health risks.

If a consignment of food is tested to have exceeded the contamination standard, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department will immediately detain that consignment and arrange for disposal.

Read the report here.

U.S. Seeks to Reassure on Contaminated Food, Wall Street Journal, April 5, 2011:

[Emphasis Added]

U.S. public-health officials sought Tuesday to reassure consumers about the safety of food in the U.S., including seafood, amid news that fish contaminated with unusually high levels of radioactive materials had been caught in waters 50 miles from the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan.

No contaminated fish have turned up in the U.S., or in U.S. waters, according to experts from the Food and Drug Administration, Environmental Protection Agency and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They expressed confidence that even a single fish sufficiently contaminated to pose a risk to human health would be detected by the U.S. monitoring system.

They also dismissed concerns that eating fish contaminated at the levels seen so far in Japan would pose such a risk. …

Read the report here.

Published: April 5th, 2011 at 6:10 pm ET
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