JAPAN – Radioactive iodine in fish is 7.5 million times the legal limit. The Japanese government has imposed new health limits on sushi!
The reading of iodine-131 was recorded by Tokyo Electric Power Co. said. Another sample taken found the level to be 5 million times the legal limit. The were found to contain radioactive cesium at 1.1 million times the legal limit.
The exact source of the radiation was not immediately clear, though Tepco has said that highly contaminated water has been leaking from a pit near the No. 2 reactor. The utility initially believed that the leak was coming from a crack, but several attempts to seal the crack failed.
The water is contaminated and that means that the fish are contaminated. All sushi in Japan is believed to be radioactive. Further, the United States government believes that all fish/sushi in the United States is also radioactive – and is considering a ban on all sushi in the United States.
Although the Japanese government believed that radiation would be quickly diluted and dispersed in the ocean, fish with high readings of iodine are being found everywhere.
On Tuesday chief cabinet secretary Yukio Edano said the Japanese government was imposing strict regulations on all sushi and sashimi.
Fishing has been suspended in the waters of Japan. Fishing has been banned near the plant, and the vast majority of fishing activity in the region has been halted because of damage to boats and ports by the March 11 tsunami and earthquake. Still, some fishermen are out making catches, only to find few buyers because of fears about radiation.
In the United States, samples of sushi taken from restaurants from San Diego up to Seattle, all were found to contain high levels of radioactive iodine – 5 million times the normal levels.
Some sushi lovers are not deterred. “I actually think that the radioactive sushi is tastier,” said Katie Barnes of Santa Monica. “The shrimp tempura rolls taste much better with a little iodine in them. Yummy!”
Other sushi patrons are distraught. “I eat sushi at least four times a week,” said Julian Tatler of San Francisco. “I don’t know what I’m going to do!”
Well, the government recommends you stay away from the sushi for a while, Julian.