News Asia-Pacific

Thursday 22 February 2018

No risk of radiation from food, says FSAI

Paul Melia

Paul Melia

IRISH consumers have been told there is no risk that Japanese food in their kitchen cupboards has been contaminated by radiation.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) last night said no major imports of food had arrived in Ireland since the tsunami which crippled the Fukushima nuclear power plant a week ago.

It added that imports were routinely tested for radiation.

"At the moment we would have no [Japanese] food in Ireland manufactured since the nuclear incident," chief executive Professor Alan Reilly said.

"We know the types of food we import from Japan, and if we need to we will be monitoring those for contamination.

"We would take in fish and specialist foods like soy sauce. The quantities would be fairly low, and it's destined for specialist shops. Seaweed for wrapping sushi would also be imported."

Trade between Ireland and Japan is lucrative, and Irish companies exported goods worth €1.6bn to the Far East last year, with goods worth €726m imported. But very little of this is food and drink. Last year, just 109 tonnes of food were shipped here, with a value of €517,000, and most of that was destined for speciality shops.

Figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show that cereals were the biggest import at 37 tonnes.

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