12 Years On: Fukushima Farmers Developing Local Specialties
Fukushima, March 8 (Jiji Press)--Nearly 12 years after the March 2011 nuclear accident in Fukushima Prefecture, farmers in the northeastern Japan prefecture are developing local specialties, defying lingering reputational damage.
Twelve Fukushima municipalities restarted agricultural production after being forced to suspend farming due to an evacuation order caused by the triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.'s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 power plant following a powerful earthquake and tsunami.
According to the prefectural government, crop planting was suspended in 17,298 hectares of farmland in the 12 municipalities, or 14 pct of the prefecture's farmland, at the end of 2011.
Cropping was resumed in 7,370 hectares, or 40 pct of the areas where crop planting had been suspended, as of March 2022 thanks to infrastructure development and work to decontaminate areas affected by radioactive fallout from the nuclear accident.
Progress has been noticeable in municipalities where the evacuation order was lifted early, such as the towns of Hirono and Naraha, where the resumption rates stood at 77.7 pct and 66.5 pct, respectively.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]