MEPs oppose relaxing checks on food imports from Fukushima region 

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Food safety MEPs say the proposal could lead to an increase of exposure to radioactive contaminated food

A draft non-binding resolution adopted on Thursday in the Food safety committee calls on the European Commission to withdraw a proposal which would reduce the number of foodstuffs imported from Japan which are to be checked for radioactive contamination.


The existing legislation applies extra checks to imports from twelve Japanese prefectures, all exposed to the radioactive fallout from the nuclear disaster that occurred at the Fukushima power station in 2011. However, the new proposal could lead to products such as rice, certain fish and molluscs, from the Fukushima region to be allowed without controls, sampling or analysis, for import into the Union.


No justification or explanation is given for this reduction of controls, they say.


MEPs add that the under the proposal, Member States would no longer be required to inform the Commission every three months through the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed of all analytical results.


Moreover, they note that while the draft proposal is based on a detailed analysis of the data provided by the Japanese authorities for 2014, 2015 and 2016, neither this analysis, nor a link to the raw data, was provided in the draft proposal.


Next steps


The resolution was adopted by show of hands. It will be put to a vote by the full House during the 11-14 September plenary session in Strasbourg.




Following the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power station special conditions governing the import of feed and food originating in or consigned from Japan were laid down in implementing Regulation 2016/6. This regulation provides that the existing measures are to be reviewed by 30 June 2016. This draft measure amends Implementing Regulation (EU) No 2016/6, and provides that, based on the data submitted by the Japanese authorities for feed and food products originating in the prefecture of Fukushima, it is appropriate to lift the requirement of sampling and analysis before export to the Union for certain products.