Tests performed Saturday food supply found radiation in spinach from farms six 60-75 miles south of Japan’s stricken reactors. Radioactive iodine in the spinach exceeded government safety levels three to seven times, reported food-safety officials. High levels of radioactive iodine are linked to thyroid cancer.
Milk at a dairy 20 miles from the leaking reactors was found on Wednesday to contain small amounts of iodine-131 and cesium-137.
The milk and spinach are from an agriculturally rich area, so the radioactive contamination could affect the food supply for large areas of Japan. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said that more tests are being done on other foods, and if more contamination is found, food shipments from the area will be halted. He also insisted that the contaminated foods “pose no immediate health risks”.
More than 7,600 people were killed by the earthquake-spawned tsunami that knocked out the nuclear reactors. More than 11,000 people are still missing.
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Keywords: Fukushima Japan nuclear reactors tsunami earthquake