Belfast Telegraph

Strict food controls after N-leak

Health chiefs have imposed strict controls on food from quake-hit Japan amid radiation fears after a nuclear power plant leak.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) said it wanted import controls, in line with European standards, to limit risks from food from 12 regions.

It is feared produce from the area may have been contaminated by a radiation leak at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

Japanese officials have confirmed high levels in raw milk, vegetables such as broccoli and cauliflower, and sea water, while tap water in some places, including Tokyo, has seen radiation levels which are unsafe for babies.

Professor Alan Reilly, FSAI chief executive, said authorities wanted to see safety declarations from Japanese officials on food. "A range of measures will apply to all feed and food originating in or consigned from 12 localities of Japan, including the four most affected by the accident," he said.

"All products from these localities will have to be tested before leaving Japan and will be subject to random testing in the EU. Feed and food products from the remaining 35 localities will have to be accompanied by a declaration stating the locality of origin and will be randomly tested upon arrival in the EU.

"Ireland has very few direct imports from Japan and will be aligned with other Member States in relation to our monitoring of these foodstuffs."

The four worst affected areas in Japan are Fukushima, Gunma, Ibaraki and Tochigi.

The controls state that Japanese authorities must supply a declaration on food and feed being exported that it has not been affected by radiation.

In Ireland strict identity tests will be carried on 10% of food from the 12 worst affected areas in Japan and on one fifth of imports from another 35 areas.


From Belfast Telegraph