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Nuclear fears contaminate sales for Japan farmers

Published on Jan 14, 2013 12:29 PM
 
This file picture taken on Sept 20, 2012 shows Japanese chef Katsuyasu Ito of French restaurant Laureole cutting a fish, cultivated in the Tohoku region, which suffered damage by the March 11 earthquake last year, for a promotion of food products made from the Tohoku region, at the French Institute in Tokyo. Many farmers in the Tohoku region in northeast Japan are struggling to sell their produce to a wary population that remains unconvinced by reassurances of food safety. The problem is the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in the region's south, where reactors went into meltdown after cooling systems were swamped by the tsunami.  -- PHOTO; REUTERS

TOKYO (AFP) - Ms Mayumi Kurasawa's seaweed company saw seven of its factories swept away by Japan's 2011 tsunami. Nearly two years later, sales continue to be eroded by consumer fears over nuclear contamination.

"Our seaweed is checked every day, and I guarantee you that it's safe," she told AFP during a recent visit to Tokyo to promote the company she works for, Kawashu.

"But we are selling two-thirds less than before Fukushima."

Like many farmers in the Tohoku region in northeast Japan, Kurasawa is struggling to sell her produce to a wary population that remains unconvinced by reassurances of food safety.

 
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