The Russian consumer products agency, Rospotrebnadzor, has authorized the sale of food produced in regions affected by the Chernobyl disaster, the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper reported on Friday. The decision comes a day before the 22nd anniversary of the nuclear power plant meltdown, RT reported.
Agricultural produce from the zones affected by fallout from the 1986 nuclear power plant disaster had been previously considered unfit for consumption, owing to above-average radiation levels. But a spokesperson from the agency assures consumers that "in twelve of the fourteen regions of the Russian Federation exposed to radiation from the explosion, all production now corresponds to normal hygienic standards".
The Bryansk and Kaluga regions remain areas of radioactive hazard. However the agency's spokesperson said "In all of the fourteen affected regions, food for schools and kindergartens, as well as shops and markets, is safe to eat".
Local inhabitants of the affected areas have been growing food and rearing livestock on infected land for years without official approval. Some have even returned to live in villages within the exclusion zone.