Tougher Radioactive Checks of Food Imports from Japan Mooted

      July 31, 2013 12:22

      The Korea Food and Drug Administration wants to make a permanent fixture of inspections of food from Japan after Tokyo Electric Power officially admitted that radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant is seeping into the ocean.

      Currently food imports from Japan are inspected under temporary measures put in place after the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan's eastern coast in 2011, but after the Tokyo Electric Power's admission the KFDA feels that these measures are no longer good enough.

      Doing that has so far only meant asking the Japanese government to provide paperwork on tests for strontium, plutonium and other radioactive materials, which can lead to a ban on imports of Japanese food products, except fish and marine products, that show even slight traces of radioactivity.

      To be on the safe side, imports of Japanese seafood products may contain no more than 100 ㏃/kg of cesium and 300㏃/kg of iodine, compared to 370㏃/kg of cesium and 300㏃/kg of iodine for seafood imports from countries other than Japan.

      "Consuming a food product containing 370㏃/kg of cesium exposes you to radiation equivalent to only 1/125th of one x-ray," the KFDA explained.

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