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Fukushima seafood goes on sale for first time since the meltdown


A man rinses a scallop shell.


Romina Ortega

For the first time since the meltdown at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant last year, Fukushima fish is going on sale again. The fishing industry voluntarily stopped fishing off the coast of Fukushima after the March 2011 disaster, the Japan Times reported. But the industry conducted radiation tests on June 14 and found that some species of fish near Fukushima are safe to eat, according to the Times. 

Just two types of fish are being sold: octopus and marine snails. Other fish species caught near Fukushima may still have some radioactive contamination, BBC News reported. Its not clear when flounder, sea bass and other fish will be approved to go on sale. 

"I was filled with both uncertainty and hope today, but I was so happy when I found out the local supermarket had sold out by 3 p.m.," Hirofumi Konno, an official at a fishing cooperative near Fukushima, told the Associated Press.

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Both experts and consumers have voiced health concerns about Japan's seafood following the meltdown--even food that wasn't caught near Fukushima. In October, Greenpeace tested fish and shellfish from five supermarket chains in seven Japanese cities, and found that just over half of the samples contained radioactive contamination. Greenpeace criticized the Japanese government and the seafood industry for not clearly labeling the seafood or being transparent about its potential dangers.

However, the Fukushima Prefectural fishing cooperative says that they tested the octopus and marine snail for cesium and found "no detectable amounts," the AP reported.