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Nuclear Watch: Fukushima rice exports to resume (08/18/2014)

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Published on Aug 17, 2014

Fukushima rice exports to resume
Nuclear & Energy Aug. 18, 2014 - Updated 02:18 UTC+2
Farmers in Japan's Fukushima prefecture are resuming rice exports to Singapore this month.

This will mark the first overseas shipment of their grain since the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in March 2011.

The accident raised concerns about the safety of goods produced in the area. Local farmers had to suspend their annual exports of more than 100 tons of rice to Hong Kong, Taiwan and other places.

Japan's federation of agricultural cooperatives, known as JA Zen-Noh, has been negotiating with other countries to start accepting Fukushima rice again. The group succeeded in convincing Singaporean officials of the product's safety.

The initial export of 300 kilograms will be rigorously screened for radioactive materials before shipment. Customers in Singapore will be able to buy the rice starting this Friday.

Fukushima farmers have already restarted exports of other products like peaches and apples. Prefectural and Japan Agriculture officials say they hope to expand the rice shipments to more Asian countries.

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