The Hanoitimes - Food products that are imported from Japan will be tested randomly at local radioactive testing centers and nuclear laboratories in Vietnam.
All food products imported from Japan must have certificate of radioactive safety, said Phung Huu Hao, Vice chief of the Agency for Management of Agricultural-Forestry-Fishery Quality under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The certificates must be granted by Japanese competent agencies, with details on radioactive safety standards. The certificate is requested for products exported to Vietnam from March 24 onward.
Hao said that Japan performs this task in a transparent way. However, to ensure the safety, samples will be collected randomly at the border gates to test at one of the four laboratories in Vietnam. Vietnam will apply standards of the International Organization on Food Standards (Codex).
“If 2-3 batches of a product exceed the safety level, 100 percent of the product will be tested,” Hao said.
Batches that were exported to Vietnam after March 11 until March 24 will be kept at the border gate for inspection.
Hao said that the volume of food imported from Japan into Vietnam is not much, with only 230 tons of apples and squash in 2010.
“Everything is still under control,” Hao confirmed.
The four laboratories that are able to test radiation belong to the Agency for Radioactive and Nuclear Safety, the Da Lat Nuclear Institute, the Hanoi Institute for Nuclear Science and Technology and the HCM City Nuclear Center.
Fresh and frozen seafood products from Japan will be controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The Ministry of Health will be in charge of fresh and canned fruit and vegetable.
In Fukushima, where the nuclear incident occurred, there are five seafood processing plants, one of them exports seafood to Vietnam.
Some countries have restricted food from Japan. Russia temporarily has stopped importing food products from four provinces in Japan, namely Fukushima, Gunma, Ibaraki and Tochigi, which are located near the Fukushima Nuclear Plant. Australia also has banned products imported from Japan’s northeastern region, including seaweed, seafood, milk, milk products, fruits and vegetables.