Japanese farmers, seeking cause of post-Fukushima cattle disease, bring cow to Tokyo

The cow, from a Fukushima farm, has suspicious white spots on its skin.
By Ed Adamczyk Contact the Author   |  June 20, 2014 at 6:22 PM
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TOKYO, June 20 (UPI) -- Farmers from Fukushima prefecture, Japan, demanding an investigation into a cattle disease they say developed after the 2011 nuclear disaster, brought a cow to downtown Tokyo Friday.

Operators of the non-profit Kibo no Bokujo farm brought the adult cow to the steps of the Japanese Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries ministry to dramatize their demand for an explanation of the white dots visible on the skin of their cattle.

The cow, and other farm animals, developed the condition after three reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 plant, nine miles from the farm, suffered meltdowns in the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Large amounts of farmland in Fukushima have been affected by radioactive fallout, and the 350 cows on the Kibo no Bokujo farm were abandoned as their owners escaped the radiation.

"Our cows cannot be shipped as meat. They are evidence of lives affected by radiation," said Masami Yoshizawa, farm leader. Added fellow farmer Naoto Matsumara, "What if this started happening to people? We have to examine the cause of this and let people know what happened to these animals."

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