Safety of Food Produced in Japan: Past and Present Status of Radioactive Contamination
Foundation of Food Safety and Security, Japan
1-29-6 Hamamatsu-cho, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-0013, Japan
In 2011, the radionuclide released from the nuclear power plant in Fukushima contaminated 3.4% of agricultural and marine products to a level exceeding the standard. After measures were introduced to inhibit radionuclide absorption and to decontaminate farmland, contamination exceeding regulatory limits fell to 0.002% in 2014. The 0.002% of contamination remaining involves fungi and wild edible plants from forested regions and some fish caught in rivers where decontamination has not been done. Restrictions were placed on shipments of food exceeding regulatory limits, so such food was never distributed. The allowable dose, which is the basis of regulatory limits of radionuclide concentrations in food in Japan is 1 mSv per year based on the guideline set by the Codex Alimentarius Commission which is responsible for establishing international standards for food. The issue of radioactive food contamination was thus resolved in a short time. According to a survey conducted 2014, the estimated radiation dose a person would consume over 1 year from radioactive cesium contained in food distributed for consumption ranged from 0.0007 to 0.0022 mSv a year. This amounts to less than 1% of the yearly permissible dose of 1 mSv.
-  Emergency Report on Radioactive Nuclides in Food (March 29, 2011. Food Safety Commission of Japan)
[Japanese site] http://www.fsc.go.jp/sonota/emerg/emerg_torimatome_20110329.pdf [accessed Aug. 25, 2015]
[English site] https://www.fsc.go.jp/english/emerg/emergency_report_radioactive_nuclides.pdf [accessed Aug. 25, 2015]
-  Food Safety Risk Assessment: Radioactive Nuclides in Foods (October 27, 2011. Food Safety Commission of Japan)
[Japanese site] http://www.fsc.go.jp/sonota/emerg/radio_hyoka_detail.pd [accessed Aug. 25, 2015]
[English site] https://www.fsc.go.jp/english/emerg/abstract_radioact_draft.pdf [accessed Aug. 25, 2015]
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