Friday, September 9, 2011

Japan: Radioactive substance again found in beef - 9th Sept 2011

Tests have again showed that beef cattle from northeastern Japan contain high levels of radioactive cesium, officials said on Thursday.

The contaminated beef cattle was detected in Japan's Iwate Prefecture, located in the Tohoku region of Honshu Island, as tests showed that two of eight beef cattle being shipped exceeded the government's allowable limit of 500 becquerels of cesium per kilogram (2.25 pounds), officials told Kyodo news agency.

On Tuesday, basic screening tests on the eight cattle showed they contained cesium. Further tests later detected high levels of the radioactive substance in two of the cattle, forcing authorities to sacrifice them.

The radioactive substance is the first found in beef cattle since the government lifted its ban on shipments from the region last month. The ban was imposed after the discovery of contaminated beef from the area.

In July, radioactive cesium was found in straw fed to cattle at a farm in Minamisoma, Fukushima Prefecture with an average of 75,000 becquerels of the radioactive isotope per kilogram (2.25 pounds), which is about 56 times the allowable limit. Read More