Twenty-five breweries from the Fukushima Prefectural sake cooperative are banding together to promote their latest beverage offerings and assure the public that they are safe from any radioactive fallout from the 2011 nuclear disaster in the region.
Japan’s sake industry is one of the many that have been affected by the public’s fear of buying anything from the Fukushima region. Other products like mushrooms, fruits, cereals, wasabi, seaweed and salmon are now looked upon with suspicion of containing any radioactive material. But the sake brewers say that all rice used for their beverages undergo strict checks for radioactivity, even tighter than the government standard of 10 becquerels or lower per kilogram. Last October, the government allowed the rice from the region to be sold once again. The entire brewing process of the sake also has regular checks, including in the unrefined stage and until the sake is ready to drink. They are hoping that people will start trying their newest products, as they unveiled them at a show in Tokyo’s Ginza shopping district last Tuesday.
The government had to raise the legal limit for radioactive cesium in Japanese produce in the wake of the Fukushima Plant meltdown in 2011 but since April of 2012, they have returned to normal. Still, sales and exports in the region have not improved and are drastically affecting the different industries.
[ via NHK World ]