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Japan

Olympic Organizer Wants To Feed Athletes Fukushima Produce 149

New submitter Grady Martin writes: Toshiaki Endo, Japan's government-appointed parliament member in charge of planning for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, has expressed hopes of supplying the Olympic/Paralympic village with foods grown in Fukushima [Google's autotranslation], stating, 'Using foods from Fukushima in the village is another possibility. I wish to strengthen ties with ground zero in numerous ways.' Would you eat it?
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Olympic Organizer Wants To Feed Athletes Fukushima Produce

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  • Yes. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 25, 2015 @01:45PM (#50181527)

    Yes, yes I would.

    This so called article is simply scaremongering of the highest order. You should be ashamed!

    • Re:Yes. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Applehu Akbar ( 2968043 ) on Saturday July 25, 2015 @01:52PM (#50181575)

      Crops from this particular area are undoubtedly better tested than any other food in the world.

      • Here is some information on testing:
        http://www.rt.com/news/219799-... [rt.com]

        • Anyone who is surprised by the fact that the long term effects of the Fukushima event won't live up to the FUD, might want to question those sources.
        • Re:Yes. (Score:5, Informative)

          by Applehu Akbar ( 2968043 ) on Saturday July 25, 2015 @03:12PM (#50181895)

          100 becquerel for kg in the rice? Inasmuch as background is 4500 bq inside the human body, you're going to have to add some radium watch dial scrapings for flavor.

          • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

            You can't measure the potential danger in becquerels, you also have consider the type of radioactive substances in the food. Potassium isn't a problem as the body regulates it and ensures that it does not concentrate in areas where it could do damage. Caesium, on the other hand, can cause cancer even in small quantities if it ends up in organs and sits there gently irradiating them for decades.

            It's the reason why so many children have to have their thyroid glands removed. Small amounts of radioactive partic

      • Crops from this particular area are undoubtedly better tasting than any other food in the world?!

        Um, I would have to.... Oh.... So sorry...

      • Possibly, but the Japanese government were caught out in a cover up on this disaster from the beginning. Are they still covering up? Probably not, but when you can't trust the government, why would you risk it?

    • Yes, yes I would.

      This so called article is simply scaremongering of the highest order. You should be ashamed!

      Myself I would say yes, on the condition it has been cleared by the Japanese health and safety regulators. If it shown to be bio-equivalent, then why should we be worrying? I would say this of food from any source.

  • Would you eat it? Depends on how radioactive it is.
    • by aliquis ( 678370 )

      I've drank 1500 bq / liter water for 15? years time.

      I doubt a few greens during some days would make much of a difference.

    • by MrL0G1C ( 867445 )

      Of course, everyone knows that contact with radioactive substances causes you to develop super-powers.

  • If it tastes good and it doesn't glow too much, why not eat it?

  • by NicBenjamin ( 2124018 ) on Saturday July 25, 2015 @01:53PM (#50181579)

    And have a long talk with your team doctor about how radioactive is too radioactive to be safe.

    There's a lot of natural radioactivity in the world your body deals with every day, so just coming from Fukushima is not that scary.

  • ... Olympic organizer has decided to spend more time with his family.

    or

    In other news, Olympic committee signs binding deal to have f'ing anything else to provide food for the games.

    or

    In other news, Olympics relocated to Chernobyl because why not.

    Look, offering the food up is one thing and I'm sure its "mostly" fine. I wouldn't eat the sea food but the rest is probably fine. But you're not making that the only option. That's going to get a rebellion on your hands.

    • by kuzb ( 724081 )

      In other news, another pseudo-intellectual on /. offers up an opinion.

      • In what way did my comment suggest to you that I'm a pseudo intellectual?

        And what does that term even mean to you?

        I find it ironic that someone making unqualified insults backed by non-falsifiable arguments suggests that someone else is a pseudo intellectual.

        Your comment can't be audited because it isn't complete.

        You're not saying X person because variable 5 = Y bad thing.

        You're just saying X person = poopyhead.

        and you presume to judge my intellectual credibility?

        https://youtu.be/-5LEYG5TqaI?t... [youtu.be]

        No really.

  • Sure.. At my age what could happen to me now? But nobody under 50 should get near it.

    • But nobody under 50 should get near it.

      There is no basis for this at all, it is pure FUD.

      • No! It is pure FUN! (Fissures, Ulcers, Nuclear particles ripping apart your very being!)

      • by TWX ( 665546 )
        I'm not so sure it is FUD. If the most common conditions from exposure to a toxin manifest 30-40 years after that exposure, and if there really aren't many other conditions that result from that exposure, then it's good sense for people in their twenties to avoid exposure that could hurt or kill them in their fifties or sixties. For someone in their fifties or sixties the symptoms won't manifest until upwards of a century, and the rest of their bodies are probably already breaking-down or they're already
        • I'm not so sure it is FUD. I

          You are not sure because the FUD you have heard over the years has influenced you.

          Radiation and Asbestos health impacts have both been well studied, so if you are using that as an example, then you should very confident that eating the food is safe because we have the data . But, you don't because of the FUD.

          • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

            then you should very confident that eating the food is safe because we have the data . But, you don't because of the FUD.

            Alternatively, it is being cautious. Now you believe it is fine and prepared to take the risk so go ahead and eat it, you believe that every bit of food will be checked and every part will be ok, so go ahead and take the risk, the odds are in your favour and you'll probably be ok.

            However bio-accumulation and radio-analogues are not FUD. Ingest them and you will get a cancer if the odds aren't in your favour.

            Your whole point is like telling someone to put their balls on a table and hand you a knife. If you

            • Your whole point is like telling someone to put their balls on a table and hand you a knife. If you want to take the risk, you put your balls on the table.

              Not even remotely. The whole point is related to actual vs perceived risk. I your 'balls on the table' scenario, the actual risk seems quite unknown. There is not data to support a risk based decision.

              A more appropriate comparison would be someone choice to walk a few steps with their shoelaces untied before stopping to tie them. They could fall down and get injured. They are aware and understand the risks, and they are able to decide based on that. People act accordingly when they understand the risks,

              • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                Not even remotely. The whole point is related to actual vs perceived risk. I your 'balls on the table' scenario, the actual risk seems quite unknown. There is not data to support a risk based decision.

                Well if there is no data to support a decision then only a fool would expose themselves to the risk of developing cancer. Since it is not possible to examine all the food produced there, there is an actual risk of ingesting radioisotopes. That means there is an actual risk of developing cancer from eating it.

                They are aware and understand the risks, and they are able to decide based on that. People act accordingly when they understand the risks, and when they don't they act according to their perceptions of it.

                There are two key input facts. 1) Bio-accumulation or radioisotopes occur. 2) The Fukushima plants released radioisotopes. So to properly asses the risk of eating Fukushima food you would need to use a

                • Well, you get off to a bad start because there is much data available about exposure risks.
                • What you fail to include in your discussion of risk is probability. You only discuss potential consequence, but that is not enough to evaluate a risk. And in absence of knowing probability, risk perception is skewed, a central element to my point. The data for exposure risk is known, it generally shows extremely low probability of negative health impacts. But most folks don't realize just how low that is compared to many of the things they do daily.

                  By not eating Fukushima food you are not exposing yourself to a risk of ingesting radioisotopes.

                  By not riding in a car, you are not exposing yourself to th

                  • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                    What you fail to include in your discussion of risk is probability. You only discuss potential consequence, but that is not enough to evaluate a risk. And in absence of knowing probability, risk perception is skewed, a central element to my point.

                    A discussion of probability is only possible when the quantities of radionuclide effluent from the Fukushima disaster is generally available. I will remind you that the Japanese government has a media blackout so hard data on what type and how much radionuclides were released is not available. You are welcome to contribute that data to the discussion so probability can be assessed.

                    It is pointless complaining to me about the lack of data as I would also like to see it. Until such data is made available then

                    • A more honest comparison would be a risky activity like bungee jumping, an unnecessary risk that you choose as compared to driving car which is a necessary risk you control.

                      Eating is a necessary thing. We do it all the time. We don't bungee jump every day as a normal activity. We ride in cars unnecessarily quite often. At least your analogies are heading in the right direction compared to your starting point.

                      And, we do have data that shows low level radioactive exposure risk. Levels are a key component and are easy to measure and monitor. To insinuate that levels do not matter is really something that has no real world practical basis. You would not get in a car as often if

                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Eating is a necessary thing. We do it all the time.

                      However, eating food from Fukushima that has potential radionuclide contamination is not necessary.

                      And, we do have data that shows low level radioactive exposure risk.

                      I think you are confused. I am referring to how much and what type of radio isotopes were released from Fukushima nuclear plants. If you have that data, then you have been able to by-pass the Japanese government's censorship and I would urge you to share it.

                      The list is likely quite long of the things that qualify.

                      Surprisingly you managed to mention things I consider to be stupid risks that I make a specific effort to avoid. I consider eating food from Fukushima a st

                    • You state eating the food is a stupid risk, but you don't seem to really know what that risk is. The fact that you use things like bungee jumping as a comparable risk tells me your risk perception is way out of whack with reality, which was my point. The fact that you subjectively qualify it as a 'stupid risk' is meaningless in this discussion, as you have no measure for that. The fact that you qualify it as 'unnecessary' and therefore just avoid it is your convenient method to ignore the actual risk and ri
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      You state eating the food is a stupid risk,

                      No, what I said was eating food from Fukushima that has potential radionuclide contamination is not necessary.

                      To be even more specific eating *any* food with a potential carcinogenic radioisotope load from the fallout of a nuclear reactor. Eating that is a stupid risk. I won't eat that food because I am not stupid.

                      Only a very stupid person would eat food from the Fukushima province due to the fact that the risk of radioisotope contamination is unknown.

                      That is what being stupid is.

                      you don't seem to really know what that risk is

                      However I understand t

                    • Ahh, I see you avoid responding to the unnecessary car riding. Do you never take an unnecessary car ride?

                      You say you are risk averse...I wonder how often and how evenly you apply that. I also suspect that just like everyone else, you take "unnecessary' risks on a daily basis that are much greater than eating food that has been screened to ensure levels are below threshold. So, no, you don't know what those levels are, but you do know they are below the threshold, which is a known level, and far below lev
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Ahh, I see you avoid responding to the unnecessary car riding. Do you never take an unnecessary car ride?

                      No, I said track racing. Last vehicle I took out was 300+hp on a dirt track. Ask me to get in a car with four teenagers though and I doubt I'd do it.

                      You say you are risk averse...I wonder how often and how evenly you apply that.

                      I said No - nothing wrong with my risk perception, nor am I risk adverse. which means I take risks - usually calculated.

                      So, no, you don't know what those levels are, but you do know they are below the threshold, which is a known level, and far below level show to have any negative health correlation.

                      No, the threshold is unknown. Looking at what is happening to insect species the probability is it is quite high. The athletes will be ok though, every bit of the food will be screened. As for those who this whole charade is about, the japanes

                    • You are full of straw, man.

                      You certainly avoided my question quite intently. So let me ask again; Do you ever take an unnecessary car ride?

                      We both know why you are avoiding an answer. Because the answer is YES and in completely undermines your insistence that your choices are based on science and understanding.

                      To answer both your questions, would I eat food from Fukushima with a defined amount of contamination, the answer is YES, if that level was measured to be below the safety thresholds set by J
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Do you take unnecessary car rides?

                      I thought about this for about 5 minutes, so that you would get a sincere and truthful answer. I'm a busy person, I don't get a chance to do unnecesary driving - fuck I wish I had the time for that. Additionally I've got cycling to work on my mind next so I don't have to drive there either and get additional exercise.

                      So sincerely, NO. I do not.

                      We both know why you are avoiding an answer. Because the answer is YES and in completely undermines your insistence that your choices are based on science and understanding.

                      Well, there again you would be wrong. Having a good understanding of the science is how I assess the risk.

                      In reality I didn't want to talk about a car analogy bec

                    • Your whole summary is quite telling. You say you use scientific methods to evaluate risk, yet you repetitively ignore probability. Probability is central to scientific evaluation of risk.

                      And you demonstrate your ignorance to the actual risk by comparing eating this screened food to racing cars and bungee jumping. The risks of the latter are many orders of magnitude greater.

                      You can go on and on about bio-accumulation and generally state that it is going to result in all these horrible outcomes, but rea
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Your whole summary is quite telling. You say you use scientific methods to evaluate risk, yet you repetitively ignore probability. Probability is central to scientific evaluation of risk.

                      So is data. Where do you propose I get the data on the Fukushima fallout from to caclulate those probabilities if the Japanese government is withholding or not collecting it?

                      Without data you cannot calculate the probability so all you are left with is uncertainty. You said yourself [don't] tell us levels don't matter, when they certainly do. [slashdot.org] Now when the very same argument is in front of you you say that levels don't matter when calculating the probability. I feel that is a hypocritical way of twisting the

                    • You don't see too read very well

                      Now when the very same argument is in front of you you say that levels don't matter when calculating the probability.

                      I never said that, you change the words to suit your attempts at making a point. I actually said you need to know the levels AND the probabilities, the max levels are sufficient, we know that from the testing. How hard is this to understand.

                      Yo might want to worry about what you eat elsewhere. Acceptance limits in the EU and US are more than 10 times higher than in Japan, and in turn there is no known or observed health risks at 100 times those levels. The information is ou

                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      You don't see too read very well

                      Well I just started to need glasses for reading, but I'm still ok on the computer. Quite an odd attack, btw

                      Now when the very same argument is in front of you you say that levels don't matter when calculating the probability.

                      I never said that, you change the words to suit your attempts at making a point.

                      That's right, it's annoying isn't it - you have been doing it to me throughout this thread. I'm glad you got that point.

                      I actually said you need to know the levels AND the p

                    • Tritium is quite harmless in small amounts, and leaves the body quite quickly if ingested.It is probably the least harmful of any radionuclide.

                      Do you know how many things in your body cause "mutations and cell death"? I'm sorry to inform you that it is happening in your body right now, and at levels much greater than anything solely caused by a small tritium ingestion. In fact, you get more cell damage and mutations from exposure to UV that you could ever expect to get from tritium exposure from a nuclea
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Tritium is quite harmless in small amounts, and leaves the body quite quickly if ingested.It is probably the least harmful of any radionuclide.

                      Really? I've just provided you with 'The information is out there'. You're telling me your trite little flippant 'some guy on the internet sentence' is more authoritive than actual peer reviewed scientific research on the subject of Tritium and you 'probably' know better than all those with doctorates in the subject.

                      What was I thinking how could I believe all those fellows over Mr D from 63 whose overwhelming authority on the subject of radionuclides (a word he just learned but still doesn't quite understa

                    • Please, make a list of all the thing that are presently causing 'cell damage and mutations' in your body. Then tell me why you are worried specifically about tritium.

                      You purposefully avoid and discussion of practical exposure levels and risk. Until you do, you are a waste of time.
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Please, make a list of all the thing that are presently causing 'cell damage and mutations' in your body. Then tell me why you are worried specifically about tritium.

                      Transgenic disease, decreased brain weight of offspring. However you are more likely to have been exposed to sr-90 or even plutonium. It is in your food chain and ultimately you are likely to be exposed to it because you don't know what steps will reduce your possibility of exposure. I don't care what the probability is because it won't affect me.

                      More than likely, if you have children, your failure will cause them to suffer because they will be more sensitive to the exposure than you are. Your ignorance wo

                    • What do you know, another list of horrible things, but no discussion of exposure levels, probabilities, etc. Until you even try to discuss those vital components, you are certainly wasting time.
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )
                      What do you know, another trite vapid, shallow response empty of reason and fact. Even when I did discuss those vital component you ignore it and pretend you have said something profound.

                      You're just wrong and can't admit it and now you want to use your expert ad hom attack skills because that's what you do.

                      But go on pretending.

                    • Are you saying it is wrong to evaluate risk using probability and levels of exposure? If so, then I'll simply have to disagree.
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Are you saying it is wrong to evaluate risk using probability and levels of exposure? If so, then I'll simply have to disagree.

                      No, as I have said several times, I am saying you can't calculate probability without knowing levels.

                      You need to know how much of each radioisotope was released, to determine how many doses were release in the environment. You need it's chemical toxicity and how alpha, beta and gamma energetic it is. Then you need to know how long it's decay cycle is and then repeat it for the daughter products. Then you can start to determine statistic probabilities over time and the effect on populations with modelling.

                    • Do I strike you as a mindless reasonless anti-nuker or as someone with educated concerns?

                      You strike me as someone who has no ability to perform usable risk comparison, and one who makes excuses for not doing so. I can't know your reason or agenda for doing so, it could be nuclear FUD induced paranoia, shilling, or a simple inability to compare risks objectively.

                      For the Fukushima food, you know the testing levels which indicate the exposure levels. You should know the risks associated with those levels (likelihood of a negative health impact), and you should be able to make a reasonable comp

                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      How disappointing. Given an opportunity to discuss based on science and reason I see that you have chosen the fanboi route. It is clear you are unable to challenge this argument and instead choose to attack me as your only remaining option for a response.

                      So far, the best you have is a car analogy driven at sufficient max levels to see if the information is out there. You are ridiculous.

                      I can't know your reason or agenda for doing so, it could be nuclear FUD induced paranoia, shilling, or a simple inability to compare risks objectively.

                      Alternatively, you are ignoring the facts and science and your only remaining option is an ad hom attack to provoke an e

                    • Isotope content is proportional to level of radioactivity. That is why they use that method to screen. Its not that hard to understand. It is the most effective way to measure. The content is under the limits. Your question of how many kilograms of plutonium are in the food is a prime indicator of your ignorance, as there was likely less than 55 grams in total released to atmosphere. Intensive screening plant and ground testing throughout the district shows plutonium contamination is quite minimal (that mig
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      Isotope content is proportional to level of radioactivity.

                      I think you actually mean, radioactivity level is proportional to radio-isotope content subject to if it is organically bound and how much water is in the food to moderate the alpha, beta and gamma emmissions.

                      That is why they use that method to screen. Its not that hard to understand.

                      Just send me a link to a screening machine that can detect a microgram of plutonium in a pallet of lettuce. Or show me a mathematical model that accounts for radioisotope uptake and very large spatial variability between and within landscape units and all the other variables used to determine it stati

                    • You really think detecting the radioactivity from a micro-gram of any radioisotope is difficult? Common lab equipment these days can detect molecules in parts per trillion.

                      You also need to learn a little more about the transport mechanisms that are in play. You don't get clumping, you have fairly steady dispersion of trace elements. It is easy to do sample testing of areas. Some things like mushroom will collect cesium, those mechanisms are well understood, but you won't just get a high concentration, a
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      You really think detecting the radioactivity from a micro-gram of any radioisotope is difficult? Common lab equipment these days can detect molecules in parts per trillion.

                      Well you're talking about detecting radioactivity which isn't isn't molecules and what you are talking about is done in the controlled environment of a lab, not in a food distribution centre. But I'm sure the cost of that equipment and the expertise required to operate and maintain it won't impact the price of lettuce too much, especially if you don't mind paying a premium to eat food that has some probability of heath impacts, then you just eat it.

                      You can easily detect even a remotely unsafe concentration of plutonium or radioactive source from quite some distance.

                      Well if you think your belief system will keep you safe the

                    • So, now you are moving to assuming the equipment is not capable, nor the operators. Again, that comes not from any insight or understanding, but more from lack of knowledge and misconceptions. It is quite easy to operate radiological test equipment.

                      Still stuck on your subjectiveness, aren't you. I don't see anything in this post above that is thought out as far as a scientific risk.

                      I am confident that eating the food is fine because I understand the levels we are dealing with and just how low risk it
                    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

                      So, now you are moving to

                      and you to not answering questions. Send data on equipment that can pick up a microgram sized emitter in a ton of lettuce. The information is out there.

                      assuming the equipment is not capable, nor the operators. Again, that comes not from any insight or understanding, but more from lack of knowledge and misconceptions. It is quite easy to operate radiological test equipment.

                      If there is even a need to scan food for radionuclide contamination then it is wise to avoid it. It's not hard to understand.

                      Still stuck on your subjectiveness, aren't you. I don't see anything in this post above that is thought out as far as a scientific risk.

                      You still haven't evaluated the science with citations and references I sent you. You still haven't sent anything to back up your claims. So eat it.

                      I am confident that eating the food is fine because I understand the levels we are dealing with and just how low risk it is.

                      I'll avoid it because I understand the process of bio-accumulation as a result of repea

        • by JimMcc ( 31079 )

          Written, I sure, by somebody under 40. I'm 57. If the adverse affects may manifest themselves in 30-50 years then I would start being at risk at 87. Given my health, my genes, and medical science, barring any accident, I fully expect to live into my late 80's or even into my 90's. To blithely dismiss the risks to people in their 50's or 60's is pretty calloused. Perhaps you'll view your longevity differently once you're in your 50's.

  • Toshiaki Endo tenders his resignation, effective immediately. Says he needs to spend more time with his family.
  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Saturday July 25, 2015 @02:40PM (#50181777)

    this is only an issue for spectators because all the competitors bring their own food for good reason.

    competitors don't want...
    * to become ill from food you aren't used to eating.
    * to get disqualified because a jingoistic jerk spiked their food.

  • Oh wait that's just the regular potassium in bananas. Next time you think of radioactive decay in foods think of the children, namely the baby foods.
  • by Elfich47 ( 703900 ) on Saturday July 25, 2015 @03:07PM (#50181877)
    Most competitors are on very regimented diets. The last thing they want to do is upset their digestive tracks in the days leading up to a major competition. Teams routinely bring their own food with them. This was a "story" during the Russian winter Olympics when the Russians tried to put a hold on Chobani yogurt that was coming in the country by the pallet (amoungst all the other food coming in). The news was trying to drum it up as a disaster (right next to the wild dogs wandering around in the hotels).

    I expect to see the Japanese Olympic committee push the idea of Fukashema produce; the teams will mouth polite noises at the appropriate points - and then continue with the diets that have been developed and tracked for each team member.

    As competitors are knocked out of competition you will see more variation and experimentation in their diets. Anyone that is still in competition will be adhering to their diets.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      It's 'tract', not 'track'.

    • Actually food is made available in Olympic villages and outside food is often restricted due to concerns over doping. There's tons of stories relating to this from the Beijing Olympics. Usain Bolt even recalled eating nothing but chicken nuggets and cola for two days before his record run because it was the only food available he felt was safe.

  • Simple reason:
    If it's radioactive I don't want to eat it.
    If it's not radioactive I'm not missing out on anything. Someone else can be the guinea pig.
    Why take the chance, just to show how progressive I am?
  • Radiation + World Class Athletes = Superheroes
  • There is one question that needs answering: Would they allow their Tenno to eat it?

    If so, it most certainly is absolutely safe. If not, well, I would wonder why.

    • If you're actually wondering; yes, on several occasions the Emperor (and the Empress) have eaten both vegetables and rice from Fukushima while visiting farming communities there. Furthermore, government officials including the PM have done the same.

  • There is likely more radiation is food grown in various parts of America than from Fukushima.

    In fact if you eat bananas at all from anywhere, you are absolutely getting way more radiation than from any produce grown in Fukushima.

    There are so many natural sources of radiation you deal with every day, including the sun...

    It's really a shame people can't be at all rational around radiation and apply the same kind of one-drop rule that racists use to justify their own crazy statements and thoughts.

  • I am over 40, the main exposure in question should be Caesium 137, and 20km around the reactor AFAIU no foods are grown.

    Taken my average lifespan, the expected difference between the area in question and areas further away/areas where i lived/the exposure we all got in 70s and 80s, i dont see any objective reason against it.

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