Radioactive substances detected in tea leaves
Radioactive contamination has been found in tea leaves in Chiba and Gunma prefectures, about 200 kilometers from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Similar contamination has been found over a wide area around Tokyo including Ibaraki, Kanagawa, Saitama and Shizuoka prefectures.
Chiba authorities say up to 763 becquerels per kilogram of radioactive cesium were detected in tea leaves picked on Tuesday in Narita and 3 other cities.
The provisional state limit is 500 becquerels per kilogram.
The Chiba government on Wednesday requested tea growers in the 4 cities to voluntarily halt shipments, and asked dealers not to sell the tea produced in the areas.
But 2 tea growers in Narita City reportedly shipped their tea leaves, and dealers sold some processed tea to local consumers.
Radioactive materials in tea leaves exceeding the legal limit was earlier detected in other areas in the prefecture.
In Gunma Prefecture, 780 becquerels per kilogram of radioactive cesium were detected in tea leaves picked on Tuesday in Shibukawa City.
The Gunma government on Wednesday asked farm cooperatives to halt shipment of tea leaves.
This is the first tea contamination case reported in Gunma Prefecture.
Thursday, May 26, 2011 07:45 +0900 (JST)
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source: NHK (http://www3.nhk.or.jp/daily/english/26_06.html