24 Mai 2017
May 23, 2017
Rice farming resumed on Tuesday in a town near the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, for the first time since the 2011 accident.
The trial farm in Tomioka Town is aimed at confirming the safety of rice grown in the area and resuming sales. Rice shipments from the town are currently restricted. Evacuation orders for most areas of the town were lifted last month.
Farmer Noboru Watanabe is planning to grow rice in a small paddy as part of the trial. The 56-year-old farmer now lives in Iwaki City in the prefecture.
On Tuesday, he returned briefly to Tomioka with his wife Satomi to plant seedlings.
The surface of the paddy had been removed for decontamination and re-filled with sand. Chemicals have been applied to improve the soil.
Watanabe said he is happy to feel like a farmer again, but that he is anxious about whether the rice will grow favorably. He pledged to manage his paddy well.