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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Japan : Fukushima farmers protest near TEPCO headquarters

Article from NHK News :

" Farmers affected by the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have demanded that its operator put it under control and compensate them as soon as possible.

About 200 vegetable and dairy farmers from Fukushima, Chiba, Ibaraki and other prefectures took part in the protest in front of the headquarters of the Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, in Tokyo on Tuesday.

The farmers displayed vegetables and milk cows, shipments of which have been banned due to radiation concerns, and demanded sufficient compensation for damage caused by the bans and rumors.

TEPCO officials apologized to the farmers for causing trouble, saying the firm is trying to settle the crisis and will compensate them with help from the government.

Milk shipments from 2 municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture remain banned, as are shipments of spinach, cabbage and other leafy vegetables from the entire prefecture.

In a related move, farmers in Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo, say the accident has so far cost them 530-million yen, or about 6.5-million dollars.

The estimate was reported by a task force set up by agricultural cooperatives in the prefecture at an inaugural meeting on Tuesday.

The loss is attributed to bans on shipments of 6 kinds of vegetables from part of the prefecture between April 4th and 22nd, consumer reluctance to buy vegetables from Chiba, and a fall in prices. The farmers plan to seek compensation from TEPCO."

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