All Fukushima school meals clear radiocesium safety limit

Samples of all 2,669 school meals served for lunch in Fukushima Prefecture in fiscal 2015 cleared the highest allowable level of 100 becquerels per kilogram for radioactive cesium specified by the Food Sanitation Act, according to the results of monitoring by the prefecture’s education board. Monitored were lunches at elementary, junior and high schools in 26 municipalities and at 16 such prefectural schools. It was the fourth straight year that all school lunch samples cleared the safety limit in the monitoring project undertaken in the wake of the 2011 nuclear accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima Daiichi plant. The latest outcome was reported at a meeting on the promotion of Fukushima food safety held in Fukushima city on June 16. In fiscal 2015 through last March, radiocesium was detected in two samples, but both were far below the safety standard. One sample had a reading of 1.01 Bq/kg in Iwaki city last October and the other showed 1.14 Bq/kg in Yanaizu town last January. The number of lunch samples tested in the past four years since fiscal 2012 totaled 9,970, with a maximum measurement among them at 2.53 Bq/kg. "We have been able to confirm the safety of school meals. We would like to continue monitoring in municipalities and at schools that desire testing," said an official in charge of health education at the prefectural government’s office of education. (Translated by Kyodo News)