25 Décembre 2013
December 24, 2013
Fukushima rice-cultivation area to be expanded
Japan's government plans to permit rice cultivation on an experimental basis in paddies in Fukushima Prefecture next year, 3 years after the nuclear disaster.
This year, the agriculture ministry banned rice planting in 5,300 hectares of rice paddies within evacuation zones, citing the risk that the crops could contain levels of radioactive material over the government limit.
But following the government's review of the evacuation zones in August, the ministry decided to allow experimental rice planting in 3,900 hectares.
The purpose of experimental rice cultivation is to verify the level of radioactive material in the rice produced.
The ministry says that if farmers want to resume full-scale rice cultivation, their entire crop will be checked by the prefecture and municipalities. If the level of radioactive material is within the limit, the rice can be put on sale.
The ministry says its plan to expand crop acreage depend on the situation in each area.
Dec. 24, 2013 - Updated 10:21 UTC