Kyodo: Rice exceeds new cesium limit for first time — 60 km from Fukushima plant

Published: October 24th, 2012 at 4:35 am ET


(Subscription Only) Title: Radioactive cesium level of Fukushima rice exceeds allowable limit
Source: Kyodo News
Date: Oct. 24, 2012

Rice produced by a farmer in Sukagawa, Fukushima Prefecture, returned a radioactive cesium reading of 110 becquerels per kilogram, exceeding the regulatory maximum of 100, the prefectural government said Wednesday.

While it is the first time that the radiation level of Fukushima-produced rice surpassed the current limits introduced in April, the rice produced by the farmer has not been put on distribution channels, the local government said.

Of 320 bags of rice produced by the Sukagawa farmer, only a bag of the Koshihikari brand of unpolished rice showed the excessive level of radioactive cesium.


Published: October 24th, 2012 at 4:35 am ET


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31 comments to Kyodo: Rice exceeds new cesium limit for first time — 60 km from Fukushima plant

  • GlowInTheDark GlowInTheDark

    People are just beginning to realise, according to the owner who runs a rice processing business, that it is impossible to clean/decontaminate the rice processing equipments which means that even if there is a batch of non-radioactive rice, they will get smeared with radioactive particles anyway and the equipment will accumulate the contamination harming the workers who breath in the air. 🙁

    I think, from the day one, the contamination was unstoppable.
    Decontamination is a myth but Japanese gov't keeps on dangling the carrot in front of the people and they are fooled in the hope that their cities will be cleaned in 2, 3, 5 years and they could go home.

  • GlowInTheDark GlowInTheDark

    If anyone is interested in looking at the new high speed (10 seconds) radiation screening equipment, here are some photos.
    No lead walls which mean that if background is high (which is the case in Fukushima!!) the results won't be accurate or possibly detect a false lower radiation level.

  • PavewayIII PavewayIII

    The rice is clearly not following TEPCOs evacuation zone circles. 60km is well outside the danger zone. The rice must obey! This is just like those defiant cows that illegally bio-accumulate cesium even though they are over a hundred kilometers from Fukushima. Animals and crops must follow government directives immediately and stop accumulating cesium.

    Lick it…. Go ahead, LICK IT!

  • Sue

    Becquerels..schmecquerels.. Could someone please explain why this article says the regulatory maximum levels of radioactive caesium in rice is 100 becquerels per kilo. I have also seen this figure used in other articles.

    My understanding is that the Japanese and EU maximum level is 500Bq/kg.

    Am I missing something?

    • guezilla

      How about learning to use Google? 🙂 But, you can start with – pretty well explained, but the short of it is on April 1st 2012 the permissible levels were lowered, and 100 Bq/Kg is now the allowed limit for general foods.
      This stems mostly from adjustments going from 5 mS/year limit to 1 mS/year, although they went even lower in some categories. I'd also say the old standards were based more on the thought of people eating radioactive foods maybe once or twice a year – facing the prospect of people eating "maximum contamination" foods day in and day out all year along, the limits become much more serious business in Japan.
      I understand the European limit for Cesium still stands at 600 Bequerels/kg, this being mainly due to the Chernoby fallout, and some food-stuff still exceeding even that limit: (But again, most people are not exposed to that level of contamination day in, day out).
      What is unclear to me about the Japanese standards is how they account for other radionucleides bedsides Cesium; the translation linked just asserts they do account for them, but I can't find explanation. The European limit is for caesium-134 and -137 only, there may be as much plutonium as they can afford.

      • GlowInTheDark GlowInTheDark

        Either way, Japanese food radiation level is much lower than the EU level so the UK & EU countries should have no reason to refuse imports from Japan. It's safer…right!? The UK is ruled by EU… more to the point, non-elected members e.g. EU & UN are influencing the rules from the backdoor. Clever.

        • GlowInTheDark GlowInTheDark

          ps, arclight posted this link before which is dated on June 2012.

          • guezilla

            Hard to tell without access to all relevant legislation and being a lawyer, but my guess is the Japanese radiation limit only applies to food consumed there, and food which can't be sold for consumption in Japan can be freely exported. The responsible thing to do would be to rule such foodstuff has to be disposed, but that'd be unusual.

            Thanks for the link though, it does seem it supercedes the 737/90 that I referenced, and is currently in force. Another matter is if member states have yet taken it into use/their own laws. But again, would need to be a lawyer to tell these things for sure. Strangely enough, couldn't find any mention of 737/90 being superceded/repealed. That would be a funny situation, having a general limit of 1250Bq/Kg except for Chernobyl contaminated having half of that at 600Bq/Kg.

            Either way, 1250Bq/Kg applied universally would still be bad news for some:

            Also as an aside, the Japanese limits indeed seem to be based on the assumption that everything people consume is contaminated (and I'd say on the surface they look remarkably sane), while the European limits are apparently based on assumption of 10% of consumed food being contaminated. Both are now aiming at the same 1mSv/year dose rate.

            • GlowInTheDark GlowInTheDark

              'Hard to tell'…well isn't that how thing are when it comes to nuclear problems? It is hard for a lay person like me to spot some small details like you could. There are so many area that is kind of vague and it could be interpreted this way or that way and there are most likely loopholes. For instance, Japan might get away by exporting the contaminated raw ingredients such as rice, flour, fish, fruits etc to be processed somewhere else like Thailand and they might come back to Japan as 'Made in Thailand' tinned food or it might end up on the shop shelves near you. Also there's 'hidden' ingredients such as milk why's been used for heat-tec garmet for Uniclo etc. I know it's not food but I'm just pointing out that this exports business doesn't stop at the food industry. I certainly don't want to be wearing Sr-90 enhanced jacket for example.

              If you don't mind my asking, from the legal point of view, is there something we (people outside of Japan) can do to halt further damages to the earth environment? We are on a slow death row. Is there any human rights act that we can use to save the Japanese children etc? Surely, their human rights must be breached in many ways (sorry, I can't speak in legal terms but my gut feeling tells me this).

              People in Fukushima or Japan has no other option but either starve or to eat contaminated food.

      • Sue

        Don't smile at me when you're being snarky guezilla. The huge difference in permissable levels seemed like there had to be a mistake somewhere. Just thought i'd ask the knowledgeable people here for a simple answer.

        I'm a mum, not a scientist and i've been searching Google all day for Japanese export information so give me a break ok.

        • farawayfan farawayfan

          Susan you would have more credibility if you didn't use belittling comments like scmekerels. People on this site take this disaster seriously and your condescending approach smacks of a shill, be less arrogant and more considerate.

          • Sue

            You have completely misunderstood me Farawayfan. I used the term 'Becquerels, schmecquerels' because of my complete lack of understanding of levels of radioactivity.

            I think that you may be being a little harsh in your judgement of me.

    • arclight arclight

      hi sue
      to confirm

      the international standards are set at codex levels

      the codex levels are higher as stated than the levels in japan..
      thats why its interesting that brunei has stopped imports from the contaminated areas.. the food monitoring is being fudged imo

      the iaea would have alot of advice for the japanese on this.. i believe they use food production to decontaminate soils.. then they blend the mixture down.. however the testing of the foods in codex allows for variations that can bring the levels if 500 in rice to higher than that or say 1024 bq/kg meat and beer hops can have even higher levels wet or dry.. i think it is the same for tobacco too!

      as long as the japanese and iaea distort the measurements and lie about the air and ground contamination the international trade organisations are duty bound in law to buy it..

      the questions that arise from this deception are

      why do children from around the contaminated lands of belarus etc have to have cesium breaks

      why do the children of fukushima and myagi need cesium breaks?


      • arclight arclight

        The money raised will go to a small NPO ‘Yugakusha’ located in the countryside of Fukushima Prefecture and which organizes short holidays for the children who live close to the nuclear power plant. At ‘Yugakusha’ the children can escape the daily strain of living with the threat of high levels of radiation, of wearing masks and long sleeves to protect themselves, and of constantly checking radiation levels before they play outside. It gives the children the chance to be children and not to worry about the safety of the air they breathe, the soil they play on, or the water they drink.

        there are some interesting questions to be asked that children have to leave an area to help their health??

        the next point is that the worst contamination after the initial plume and iodine stage is bio accumulation.. so they make us eat it.. 🙁

        then the "scientists" get their calculators out, deny any effects of ionising radiation then press some buttons till it looks good.

        the bbc environmental/science departmentsand thier handfull of experts seem to rule the roost as far as i can see..

        geraldine thomas came out to defend ionising radiation at the showing of the kazahkstan film..

        when are you going to see the Home Secretary?
        have you contacted Stop Hinckley? they might be of some use to you if you explain you have some time with the HS

        you need a strategy..


        • Sue

          You know arclight, all these figures and changing permissable levels, I'm starting to think that I may be a little out of my depth with this one.
          I am waiting for the HS to give me a date for a meeting at her next available surgery, hopefully, within the next couple of weeks.
          If EU levels are so much higher than Japanese levels, I don't really see what I can do here, although I do have some good stuff from a couple of sites. I think you're right though, I do need some help with this.

          • arclight arclight

            ok sue
            this is a toughy
            but if you get an opportunity to point out any good evidence i think it is worth a shot..
            knowing what you are going through and maybe you need some help..
            first, i am interested in helping.. it will be an interesting opprtunity for us to see how the information might get handled

            the main evidence available is in the area of genetics, especially with young people and pregnant women etc

            there is evidence on the web for that and i could arrange some links for that.. however, i noticed during the premier of into the apocolypse recently, Professor Yuri Dubrova was replaced by geraldine thomas the bbc`s favourite.. not sure if it was to bolster the its all alcohol and cigarettes brigade or not..

            you could try and contact yuri and ask him what his thoughts were on genetic damage and low dose ionising radiation with specific focus on bio-accumulated internal contamination..

            some more background info and the film and the premier " every thing is just fine" discussion.. look how haggard the director is at times.. wilkinson works under the baroness.. towing the line.. –


            the bbc political cover up is all over this but maybe yuri can supply the peer reviewed stuff? let him know you are going to see the HS.. he might be more helpful..?

            the program the bbc ran during the olympics is debunked on link

  • kalidances

    @Sue the reason we need the number is to know now much faster we're dying. If it has quadrupled since May then we need to know.

  • Wreedles Wreedles

    It really shouldn't need to be said, but just for the record: The limit for anthropogenic radioactive contamination of foodtuffs SHOULD BE 0 Bq/Kg.

  • arclight arclight

    so the limit in japan is 100 bq/kg
    in the eu is 500 bq/kg
    what is the limits in brunei or what new information did they get to ban the above areas??

    something smells wrong here??

    -Importation Of Some Food Items From Japan Suspended -Lack of trust? -Brunei Darussalam

    In this regard, importers and the public have been informed that the importation of certain food categories has been suspended.

    The importation of any meat, seafood, milk and milk products, fruits and vegetables (fresh and processed), tubers including potato and sweet Potato, seaweed and green tea products from Fukushima, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, Saitama, Kanagawa, Tokyo and Chiba Prefectures are temporarily suspended.

    • arclight arclight

      doesnt mention rice or grains directly?

    • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

      Individual grains can measure 10,000 Bq/kg, as long as the finished mixed product is under the limit, it is approved.

      In other words, mix your contaminated stuff with clean stuff until it is ok.

      Then set the testing machine up in a high radiation area, so it misreads everything as low radiation or no radiation, and voila, everything is healthy and normal.

      Governments are also prone to 'adjusting' the machines to show much lower readings than are actually there, just to keep people from excessive worry and stress, we suppose.

      Trust the government. Trust TEPCO. All is safe.. Come back to FUKU. Radiation is good for you. Smile more and nothing will happen.

  • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

    Radiation Safety Standards for Food: Comparing Chernobyl vs Fukushima; via A Green Road

    Radioactive Bananas? Peeling The Mystery; via A Green Road

  • kalidances

    At this point the contamination has spread the globe. If countries want to not go bankrupt they need to concentrate the exposure in a positive way.
    Russia is large and has a great deal of experience with radioactivity. They also have some of the best doctors in the world. Maybe open and trade, tourist, and work visa program between the two as a international effort to do deal real and viable ways to handle this situation to serve as a blueprint for everyone else.
    The world will have to quickly begin finding a scientific way to slow or stop the emissions so it's best to have a central research hub to do proper research without bias.