The government may release information on a study conducted from 1997 to 1998 on cadmium levels in domestic rice products, farm minister Tsutomu Takebe said Tuesday.

“We have to take measures that will be acceptable to the public,” the agriculture, forestry and fisheries minister told reporters.

The Food Agency conducted the nationwide survey to see if cadmium levels found in rice meet those allowed under international standards.

But the agency did not publish detailed results because the study was conducted on condition that it not be published.

Cadmium is known to be the cause of itai-itai disease, considered a type of acquired Fanconi’s syndrome characterized by kidney dysfunction and osteomalacia, which plagued a number of people, mainly women, in Toyama Prefecture in the 1950s.

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