Rice cesium levels to go online


The Fukushima Prefectural Government plans to launch an online system that allows consumers to check the radioactivity of raw rice, it was learned Wednesday.

The prefecture is scheduled to begin conducting radiation checks this week on all shipments of raw rice produced in Fukushima.

Only bags that exhibit less than 100 becquerels of cesium per kilogram, the government-set limit, are allowed to be shipped.

All 30-kg bags of raw rice will be labeled with 16-digit identification numbers. Consumers will be able to look up the cesium level of a particular bag by inputting its ID number into a website jointly run by the prefecture, agricultural cooperatives and other bodies.

The system, however, will only work for raw rice, not polished rice, and will not contain data on radioactive substances other than cesium.

The prefecture plans to launch the system by Saturday, when it is scheduled to begin checking early rice.