Radiation in Milk? Should we be worried?

With the ongoing nuclear reactor crisis in Japan as a result of the earthquake and tsunami some weeks ago, radiation has become a concern for people. Very recently there were concerns raised about radiation detected in milk from the Washington area when lab tests were conducted.

contaminated-milkRadiation contaminated milk poses a very significant risk since it is an item of common consumption and is used even for infants.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) raised concerns when it was reported that some low levels of radiation were detected in the milk samples from Spokane Washington on 25 March.

Federal officials are however reassuring consumers that there is nothing to worry about and that the levels of radiation are so low as to be miniscule and will not affect anyone negatively.

When compared with the amount of radiation that a person experiences on a regular basis, being surrounded by items such as the TV, flying in airplanes, and even construction materials, this level of radiation found in the milk is insignificant.

It is in fact lower than the levels of concern set by the FDA even in respect of children and infant formula. Further reassurance was given to the public at large that even these low levels of radiation would fall in the coming time.

However as a precautionary measure, vigilance in terms of monitoring rainfall and precipitation, drinking water and milk is being stepped up by the EPA though this has been described as “not a major health concern”.

As of now, imports of dairy products from the affected areas of Japan have been halted. Though sea food is still being imported, it is being screened for radiation before it is sold to the public.

Also since Japanese foods make up less than 4% of the items imported into the US, any risk is insignificant and there is no risk to the food supply in the country.