Farmers in Fukushima Prefecture fear the release of water from the crippled power plant there could revive concerns about contamination and again hit the price of their produce, undoing a decade of slow recovery from nuclear disaster.
Japan plans to release more than 1 million tons of contaminated water from the Fukushima No. 1 plant into the sea from 2023 as part of an effort to clean up the site. Although international authorities support the plan, it has sparked concern from neighbors China and South Korea and worried local fisherman and farmers.
"We're just about seeing our prices go back to normal after a big drop following the disaster, but now we will have to deal with the potential reputational damage all over again because of the release of the water," said Hiroaki Kusano, a pear farmer and vice leader of the local agricultural cooperative.