No radioactive cesium was detected in tests on the breast milk of mothers in Fukushima Prefecture, authorities said Nov. 5, adding that fewer women than expected offered samples.
Since June, the Fukushima prefectural government has provided telephone counseling for anxious mothers with infants following last year's nuclear disaster.
The prefecture tested breast milk from 378 mothers among the 703 who received counseling by the end of October. It said all samples indicated levels lower than the detection limit of radioactive cesium, 2 becquerels per kilogram.
The prefecture earmarked 100 million yen ($1.25 million) for breast milk tests covering around 10,000 mothers, after estimating 18,000 births a year.
A prefectural official said the results brought a sense of relief, but called on more mothers to take the test, as the number of the applicants was significantly lower than predicted.
The test is free. People registered as having their domicile in Fukushima Prefecture but living outside the area can also take it.
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