Removal of Radioactive Cesium through Cooking and Processing of Foods
Immediately after the accident at Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO)'s Fukushima Daiichi NPS, radioactive materials detected from vegetables were only attached to the surface thereof, and such radioactive materials could be washed off to some extent.
At present, radioactive materials are seldom attached to the surface of vegetables, but some radioactive materials in soil may be taken into vegetables through their roots. However, radioactive cesium absorbed into vegetables from the roots can be removed through cooking or processing with some ingenuity.
The table above shows removal rates of radioactive cesium in foods.
When boiling vegetables, the longer the boiling time is, the larger the removal rate is. This is considered to be because radioactive cesium in vegetable cells comes out into the boiling water as vegetable cells break. Also in the case of salted vegetables, the longer the salting time is, the larger the removal rate is. This is considered to be because radioactive cesium in vegetables is replaced with sodium in salt.
When cooking meat or fish, the amount of radioactive materials can be halved by discarding the cooking liquid. It is known that the removal rate is higher when boiling or cooking than grilling them.
Refer to the webpage (https://www.rwmc.or.jp/library/other/kankyo/, in Japanese) for the details of the related data.
- Included in this reference material on March 31, 2017
- Updated on March 31, 2019