Japan:All prefectures to check cattle feed
Laaska News July 19,2011
Japan’s agriculture ministry will ask all 47 prefectures in the country to check rice straw used to feed cattle for possible radioactive contamination.
Agriculture minister Michihiko Kano announced the measure on Tuesday.
The ministry had earlier asked only 11 prefectures in the Kanto and Tohoku regions, including Fukushima, to check rice straw used at livestock farms.
The ministry decided to have all prefectures undertake checks as cattle in 2 other prefectures — Niigata and Yamagata — were also found to have been fed rice straw containing radioactive cesium above the government-set limit.
The agriculture ministry says it will also look into whether dealers in eastern Japan sold rice straw kept outdoors after the Fukushima nuclear disaster began on March 11th.
Kano told reporters that the ministry will work with all the prefectures to make sure no more cattle are fed cesium-containing straw.
So far, 578 heads of cattle given contaminated feed are known to have been shipped to parts of Japan. Some of the meat has apparently been consumed.