The government on Tuesday suspended import of food items from Japan, hit by a nuclear disaster, for three months or till such time as the radiation hazard in that country has subsided to acceptable limits.
The decision to suspend the imports was taken at a meeting held under the chairmanship of P I Suvrathan, Chairperson Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
"Import of food articles coming from Japan stand suspended with immediate effect for a period of three months or till such time as credible information is available that the radiation hazard has subsided to acceptable limits," a statement issued by the Health Ministry said.
However, the Ministry said "weekly reviews will be carried out by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
The meeting was called by FSSAI to review the situation arising out of radioactive incidents in nuclear power plants in Japan and possible contamination of Japanese food being imported into India.
After detailed discussions, it was concluded that since the radiation is spreading or expanding horizontally in other parts of Japan, it may result in further radioactive contamination in the supply chain of food exports from Japan.
Representatives and experts from Board of Radiation and Isotope Technology (BRIT), Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB), Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (IITR), Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) and Shriram Institute for Industrial Research participated in the meeting.
Earlier this month, the government had ordered that food originating from Japan be tested for radiation.