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Monday, 1 August 2011

More tainted cows shipped: Japan

JAPAN - Another 290 beef cattle raised in Fukushima Prefecture have been shipped inside the prefecture as well as to Tokyo, Kanagawa and Saitama prefectures after being fed what is believed to be cesium-tainted rice straw harvested in Miyagi Prefecture.
This brought to 872 the number of cows suspected to have been contaminated with radioactive cesium and shipped from Fukushima Prefecture.
According to the Fukushima prefectural government Saturday, six cattle farms in Iwaki, Sukagawa, Furudonomachi and Ishikawamachi purchased the straw and fed it to their cows.
The highest level of radioactive cesium--24,000 becquerels per kilogram--was detected in rice straw purchased by a cattle farm in Iwaki. This level translates to about 18 times the government-set provisional regulatory limit of 300 becquerels per kilogram, if the radioactivity level is calculated based on the assumption that the rice straw was wet.
Meanwhile, the Miyagi prefectural government announced Saturday that another 103 beef cattle suspected to have been fed cesium-tainted rice straw had been shipped, bringing the total number of such cows shipped from the prefecture to 1,134.
The Miyagi prefectural government also said radioactive cesium above the provisional regulatory limit of 500 becquerels per kilogram was detected in four cows that were shipped from cattle farms in the prefecture and distributed in Koriyama, Fukushima Prefecture, and Yamagata Prefecture. Radioactive cesium above the provisional limit now has been detected in 16 cows reared in Miyagi Prefecture.
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