Japan: Radioactive Beef Served in 296 Schools in 12 Prefectures

#Radioactive Beef Consumed in School Lunches in 296 Schools in 12 Prefectures in Japan (EX-SKF, August 10, 2011):

and 43% of the schools are located in Yokohama City alone.

From Asahi Shinbun (3:02AM JST 8/11/2011):

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The survey by the Ministry of Education and Science has revealed that 296 schools in 12 prefectures have used beef from cows suspected of radioactive cesium contamination. 2 schools used the beef whose cesium level exceeded the provisional safety limit. It is not considered the level of cesium in the meat will affect health, but the ministry is telling the schools to pay attention to information on shipping restriction on food items [due to radiation].

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According to the ministry, as of August 9, the meat from the cows that may have eaten radioactive rice hay was used in school lunches in 278 elementary schools, junior high schools, high schools, and special education schools, and 18 kindergartens, in 20 cities and towns in Japan. 127 schools in Yokohama City used it, so did 53 schools and kindergartens in Gifu City [in Gifu Prefecture], and 30 schools and kindergartens in 4 cities in Miyagi Prefecture. The schools are mostly located in eastern Japan, but 40 schools in 4 cities in Mie, Shimane, Kagawa Prefectures also used the meat.

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30 schools were able to test the remaining meat, and radioactive materials were detected at 8 schools. Of the 8 schools, two schools – a special education school for students with disabilities in Miyagi Prefecture and an elementary school in Chiba, had the meat that exceeded the provisional safety limit (500 becquerels/kg of radioactive cesium), testing 1,293 to 649 becquerels/kg. The municipalities say the amount of contaminated beef per person is small, and it won’t affect the health.

In the meantime, the Food Safety Commission under the Cabinet Office is soliciting public comments (in Japanese alone please, says the Commission) on their detailed justification for their decision to set 100 millisieverts for life-time allowable radiation exposure for the Japanese. If you read their conclusion, you would think there would be no problem with any of the nuclides that have been released from the broken nuclear power plant in Fukushima. (More later.)

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