Post-Chernobyl disaster sheep controls lifted on last UK farms

Affected farmers were compensated for the cost of monitoring the sheep

1 June 2012 Last updated at 15:56

Restrictions covering sheep movements after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster have finally been lifted from all farms in England and Wales after 26 years.

After the 1986 disaster, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) placed controls on 9,800 UK farms, but these were gradually removed.

The final eight in Cumbria and the last 327 in Wales are now free of them.

Adam Briggs, from the NFU, said it meant an end to the “sorry situation” of the Chernobyl legacy.

As a result of the explosion, radioactive particles became locked in upland peat and accumulated in grazing sheep.

‘Eat with confidence’

Under the “mark and release” restrictions, the animals had to be tested for levels of Caesium-137 prior to being moved down from the fells for sales.

Farmers were paid £1.30 per animal, to compensate for the cost of holding them before monitoring.

The controls were lifted in Northern Ireland in 2000 and in Scotland in 2010.

Adam Briggs, policy advisor for the NFU in the North West, said: “I’ve spoken to a number of farmers in the area and they are all very happy with the decision.

“It gives them a bit of flexibility of when they can market the stock.

“The main thing is that research shows the meat is safe.

“People can now eat Cumbrian lamb with confidence.”


    Now folks use your brain cells and look how long its took to get anywhere close to today due to this contamination all the way from Russia to the U.K. British lands were covered in Caesium-137 and have been a nightmare to sell, nobody wanted them. So ask yourself what Hawaii, California and Alaska are going to be like right now as well as other parts of the U.S. Notice how the breadbaskets of the U.S. on the West Coast have been covered in this poison. Fukushima eclipses anything to do with chernobyl but you are not to be told how bad the situation is and everything is being covered-up. Anyone with a brain cell can see how dire the situation really is.

    -= The Unhived Mind


    Higher radiation in Jotunheimen than first believed

    Published on Monday, 21st May, 2012 at 09:44 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson and Lyndsey Smith

    New measurements of radioactivity in some areas of Jotunheimen show levels of radioactivity are higher than allowed in reindeer 26 years after the Chernobyl disaster.

    Many of the reindeer grazing on land in Vågå were discovered to have radiation levels too high for them to be used for human consumption in 2010.

    The research has found that mountains over Valdresflya are particularly exposed to radiation.

    Cesium-137 is meant to have a half-life of 30 years. The safe limit for human consumption is 3,000 Becquerel per kilo of meat.

    “Levels are dependent on the food type and region in which the reindeer are grazing, but we often measured up to 7,000 Becquerel of Cesium per kilo of meat,” Astrid Liland, head of section for health and environmental assessment Norway’s Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA), tells The Foreigner.

    Herders in the area have attempted to reduce the effects of the radiation by moving their animals to places with less pollution.

    Liland adds, “Reindeer with levels in excess of the limit are not slaughtered. They are either released, or kept in pens and fed a special diet for a period of some weeks before culling.”

    Three months ago, reports showed that some sheep in certain parts of Norway contain 4,000 Becquerel per kilo of meat.

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