Goat Farm Opens in Former Fukushima Nuclear Evacuation Zone

Society

Katsurao, Fukushima Pref., June 4 (Jiji Press)--A new sightseeing farm where visitors can pet goats has opened in a northeastern Japan village that had been fully evacuated under a government order following the March 2011 nuclear accident.

The farm, "Katsurao Yagi Hiroba Gara Gara Don," in the village of Katsurao in Fukushima Prefecture was launched by a local man as a highlight of the reconstruction of the village. The goat farm was crowded with families and other visitors on its opening day on Saturday last week.

It is the first tourist facility built by a private business in the village since the triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.'s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, which sustained heavy damage from the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

Tsuyoshi Kamata, 78, president of the company operating Katsurao Yagi Hiroba Gara Gara Don, is a native of the village. The nuclear accident forced Kamata to close his pig farm in the village and evacuate. He returned to Katsurao in 2016, when the nuclear evacuation order was lifted for most of the areas of the village.

While working on reconstruction efforts, Kamata met a man running a goat farm in the city of Nasushiobara, Tochigi Prefecture, eastern Japan. The two men shared the goal of revitalizing Katsurao by creating a main attraction in the village.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press