FUKUSHIMA, March 14 ― A farmers’ group in Fukushima prefecture has emphasized the need for implementation of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and its relevance in the context of Fukushima, which has been hit hard by the 2011 earthquake and nuclear disaster.
JA Fukushima Mirai (future) has included the need for the successful implementation of SDGs in its three-year action plan that starts from 2019.
It aims to dispel rumors about its safety in the wake of the meltdown at the Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s No.1 power station in the prefecture in 2011.
Fukushima has set a target of more than 51 percent of local produce to be certified under the international standards for production and process management, known as Global Good Agricultural Practices (Global GAP), a key step to boost sales of local produce.
Fukushima now places itself the country’s No. 2 prefecture that obtains the largest number of the GAP certifications, after Hokkaido.
JA Fukushima sees the Olympics Games is an opportunity for local farmers to build relationships with food vendors so that they can expand sales channels at home and abroad eventually.
It has also set up a new website to explain the current situation in Fukushima prefecture, including radiation and progress in reconstruction efforts.
The move comes as the eighth anniversary of the March 11 disaster approaches.
“There are still price gaps in farm products between Fukushima and other prefectures. We hope more people will learn that Fukushima produce is as safe as others,” an official from the reconstruction agency said.