To probably show the world that there is no danger from products that come out of the Fukushima Prefecture, Emperor Akihito requested that a portion of the rice harvested from Fukushima be delivered to the Imperial Palace. The rice was initially given to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe last October, as a gift from the farmers of Hirano.
The town’s farmers resumed planting rice three years after the catastrophic nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Located just 20 kilometers south of the station, the town’s livelihood has been severely affected given that people do not trust that any product coming out of the prefecture is actully free from radiation. As a sign of good faith, Hirano Mayor Motohoshi Yamada turned over around 1,920 kilograms of freshly harvested rice to Abe, which would be served at the different staff cafeterias of government agencies, including the Imperial Househould Agency.
When Emperor Akihito found out about the delivery on November 20, he requested that some of the rice be given to the Imperial Palace so they could also partake of it. “Because the rice must have been made with struggles (of farmers), we’d like to have some as well,” the Emperor reportedly said. Deputy Mayor Koki Koruda said that this news will serve as a great encouragement for the town as they continue with their reconstruction. “It is a sheer pleasure for the town as well as for producers to be able to have the fresh rice harvested for the first time in three years tasted by the emperor,” he said.
[ via The Mainichi ]