A recent tour of Fukushima Prefecture farms by two top Japan-based French chefs has raised hopes that they will help the prefecture find new markets for its agricultural produce and overcome consumer hesitancy still lingering in the aftermath of the 2011 nuclear disaster.

"This is fantastic. It's sweet when boiled and piquant when uncooked. Excellent either way," said Dominique Corby, 55, as he tasted a cabbage head at the Shiraishi Farm in Iwaki operated by Nagatoshi Shiraishi in late March.

The cabbage would be perfect for making a farci stuffed with pork, mused Corby, who served as head chef at top restaurants in Paris and Tokyo before opening his own restaurant in the Shinbashi commercial district of central Tokyo.