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Japanese Food Products

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In view of the contamination from the nuclear power plant what precautions are you taking with Japanese food products?

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      1. re: zenim

        I thought it quite amusing.

          1. re: JMF

            What food products from japan do you buy? If you are worried about the Fukushima reactor, I would be more concerned about pacific fish in general. My recollection is that the currents in the pacific would bring water towards the us west coast thereby theoretically bringing potential radiation contamination more in the direction of the us rather than the rest of japan. I think it is similar with the air. Is there something you are concerned about in particular? Your question is vague and makes me wonder what you would ask about American food post 3 mile island or European food after Chernobyl.

            1. re: Bkeats

              I think you meant that question to be for the OP.

              1. re: Bkeats

                I am concerned about fish products from the Pacific. Nuclear radiation is affecting sea and animal life along the west coast of USA. Radiation is 5X higher. Cesium-137 from Fukushima is 10,000-1,000,000 times greater than Chernobyl or the atmospheric nuclear weapons tests of the 1960's. Recent scientific reports say it could affect our seafood for many generations. We do not use food items from Middletown and surrounding area.

                Kelp, seaweed, dried vegetables, preserved vegetables, etc. from Japan. Also fruits and vegs from CA, fish from Alaska, WA, etc..

                1. re: zenim

                  A little radioactivity is good for genetic diversity.

                  1. re: JMF

                    Yeah, it's all fun and games until your 5 year old gets leukemia .

                    1. re: sedimental

                      Lighten up a little. You'll enjoy your glow in the dark existence more.

                      1. re: JMF

                        I am. I am.

                        I feel a bit sorry for the OP. It is a serious question and topic and it seems like no one is taking it that way yet.
                        .....Just Keepin it reals.....

                        :)

                        1. re: sedimental

                          Sure its a serious question but it's one to which there is no answer other than you evaluate the risks and take them or you avoid the risk altogether as there is no real other risk mitigation option.

                          1. re: Bkeats

                            It is not that black and white for me. I have been choosy about my seafood for years, now I am much more selective and I am not eating anything from the Pacific Ocean right now.

                            I also drink kombucha and miso daily, etc. keep fit and in good health.

                            I was also reading about wave patterns and how certain fish are being effected at different times of the year. I can't remember where I read it though. There might be seasonality suggestions involved in choosing seafood for people concerned(or pregnant). I actually think it was a university article. I will post it if I find it.

                            I think there is more to be said than just making jokes (some were funny) but CH might not be the best place for these kinds of discussions. Anyway, IME. These kinds of posts either seem to result in jokes made, the OP getting blasted for asking, or pissing matches between posters on the meaning of "is".

                            I think it is interesting and would like to see what others are doing.

                            1. re: sedimental

                              Part of the problem with the question is that it shows a lack of knowledge to me or at least an internal contradiction. It expresses concerns due to what happened in Fukushima. The OP seems to have very little sense of the geography other than Japan is a place far away from where s/he lives but is apparently very compact. The distance from Hokkaido to Okinawa is nearly 1600 miles. Japan is a big country. The distance from Fukushima to Tokyo is about 150 miles.

                              In response to a prior post of mine, the OP says s/he avoids foods from Middletown PA due to fears about 3 Mile Island. It looks like the OP lives in the DC area which is less than 150 miles from 3 Mile Island. If you live closer to 3 Mile Island and have fears about potential contamination of food sources than most of Japan is to the site of the Fukushima disaster, maybe you should worry about other things. If food at a farmer's market in the DC area is ok which I assume, well then I'm going to be fine with some uni from Hokkaido.

                              I'm not belittling the concern, it just needs to be put into context. Most of Japan is nowhere close to the site. The radiation from water is spreading throughout the pacific (at the same time being dispersed and diluted) potentially affecting fish very far from Japan. There is much more chance of being hurt/injured/killed from things we don't pay any heed to every day than there is likely harm from eating food from Japan.

                              1. re: Bkeats

                                Yes. smoked food is known carcinogen.

                          2. re: sedimental

                            <It is a serious question and topic and it seems like no one is taking it that way yet>

                            We are talking about it. We know it is a serious question, but I also think some people blow these things out of proportions. This is why a little joke help.

                            Do you think more people this year will die out radiation overdose from Japanese seafood or more people will die from eating too much sugar?

                            I was being very serious when I said that I don't take any precaution against the Japanese seafood.

                            It wasn't even so long ago that people were freaking out about the seafood from the Gulf due to the BP oil spill, now I hardly hear anyone talks about it.

            2. I have been wondering about this question myself, especially regarding seaweed products. Not sure where to get the facts to make informed purchases.

              1 Reply
              1. re: PegsterA

                I agree it is difficult to discern reliable sources of info. We too are concerned about seaweed and kelp.

              2. None. I'm a lot more worried about food products imported from China.

                5 Replies
                1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                  Ditto.
                  Then again, i don't buy fish from japan, and i buy seaweed products from a usa company

                  1. re: Ttrockwood

                    I buy seaweed from USA companies also but where is the source of the initial product? It is not easy to know in todays global economy.

                    1. re: zenim

                      I live in Asia, so I do have to pay attention to what comes from China vs Taiwan/Korea/Japan. My husband is Japanese, so we do consume a lot of Japanese products.

                      1. re: zenim

                        Well, i choose to believe that they are honest in saying its from the north atlantic coastline....
                        https://www.seaveg.com/shop/

                        But i understand your point.

                        1. re: Ttrockwood

                          That company you link to is reputable. All their products are harvested in the Gulf of Maine and are tested. I've been to their facility and used to live a few towns away.

                  2. I keep a eye on reports as I do fish and eat seafood in the pacific ocean. yes I'm sure all the radiation killed some 'bacteria'

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: daislander

                      But not the sharks or cockroaches

                      1. re: daislander

                        It's not the bacteria that concerns me. I'm pretty certain as you say the radiation has killed it. Probably close to 100%.

                      2. 1) know your suppliers
                        2) certain foods (plums) concentrate more than others.
                        3) don't worry too much, unless you're pregnant
                        4) Utahn milk is radioactive, so why worry?

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Chowrin

                          1) There is no way I can "know" my supplier. I can't read Chinese, Japanese, etc..
                          2)At first I thought you meant the plumes of the radioactive streams. There have been dangerous levels of cesium-137 found in mushrooms and berries grown on the west coast USA.
                          3) It's not just about me, but my grand children.

                          It is not easy to know what to believe.

                          1. re: zenim

                            Find someone who can. Or at the very least, study the agricultural sector. Hokkaiden products are not likely to be contaminated, ya know?

                            If your grandchildren are born, they're not likely to die from all this. Seriously. the kids who died after TMI were unborn. Same with Saxton.

                            Quehanna is still offlimits (people got in terrible trouble for putting a forestry camp there) -- if the Japanese haven't made Fukushima offlimits, it's not that bad.

                          1. No precautions whatsoever, eat Japanese food products daily.

                            Do avoid Chinese produce though.

                            1. I am very concerned. I no longer eat much sea food at all. One of my family members is a leading researcher in environmental toxicology.

                              I live in Washington state and most people are worried about the health of our waters in general. Not only from the recent Japanese disaster, but from possibly many factors. I have seen the death on the beaches here.

                              It is tragic and I don't think enough people outside the PNW realize the magnitude of what is going on. Other countries are concerned for what is going on for us as well :(

                              http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/artic...

                              http://losaltos.patch.com/groups/arou...

                              1. If you are that concerned about it, the only thing you can do it to avoid all pacific sourced fish and not eat seaweed/nori./kombu as there is no way to trace the source and test. But I don't bother.

                                3 Replies
                                  1. re: Bkeats

                                    Iodine supplements might be a precaution.

                                    1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                      I was reading about daily miso for radiation. There has been some research in Japan suggesting that miso might have a protective effect. It is a tasty gamble anyway.

                                  2. I avoid sushi that pulsates.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. Having just come back recently from a trip to Hong Kong, I can conclude from the following observations.

                                      - Sushi is still extremely popular over there, from crappy low end all the way up to high end. The higher end places source fish direct from Japan (not needing to be frozen, just kept on ice arriving from wholesaler market to restaurant literally the same day, but if they want something that's alive, they can get it)

                                      - Japanese department stores like Sogo are still selling lots and lots and lots of imported Japanese groceries, goods, beef, fish, fruit from various parts of Japan. As far as fruits go, there is nothing imported that comes from the Fukushima region. Fuji apples from Aomori, persimmons from Fukuoka, honeydew from Shizuoka. Also saw kiwi, strawberries from other parts of Japan.

                                      I personally have not asked a few chefs the obvious direct question (having dined at a super high end Ginza style sushi restaurant, and one doing refined fine dining/non sushi) but it is pretty obvious that there is absolutely little to no worry with Hong Kong people (and visitors to HK). Popular Japanese restaurants and department stores are as busy as ever. During last week of December when Tsukiji Fish Market shuts down, seafood is sourced from other regions like Kyushu and Hokkaido. While Hokkaido is further north, there is still a worry that fish migrating from Fukushima region or swimming north, are caught off the coast of Hokkaido....but when you tell people this fish is from Hokkaido, they will eat it regardless.

                                      When people know and realize fish and shellfish are coming off Hokkaido, like sea urchin, scallops, thornyhead (kinki), raw octopus (to name just a few), they will be like "Fuku what?".

                                      My favorite food blogger living in Taipei is still eating the top good stuff at Japanese high end restaurants, with no signs of slowdown.

                                      From that perspective, we in the USA are more paranoid than people living in Asia & Japan. That is not to say that there has not been any coverups, misrepresentation of actual data, horrible handling of PR by government, TEPCO, as well as the paranoia of the media using scare tactics irresponsibly and also misinforming.

                                      1. The contamination you mention is essentially negligible. What's happening is that our ability to measure infinitesimal quantities has increased vastly in the last few years. I haven't the slightest concern - and I'm NOT Japanese - just like Japanese movies