Fukishima's farmers' efforts to regain consumer trust in their produce, and repair their tarnished reputation after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, are finally paying off. Apples grown in the city of Fukushima have been chosen to be used in the annual World Cocktail Championships, which kicks off on Tuesday 18 Oct., in Tokyo.
During the contest, which will run through Thursday at the Imperial Hotel, Fukushima-grown apples will be used in the fruit-cutting event scheduled for Wednesday. Several varieties of fruit will be used in the competition, but for apples, only those from Fukushima will be used.
The planned appearance of apples from the disaster-hit prefecture is due to a joint effort by the Fukushima Fruit Thanks Project, a group of fruit farmers from the northern region of the prefecture and Yoshikazu Suda, a bartender in Tokyo’s Ginza district, who also hails from the prefecture.
Suda, who runs the Ginza Zenith bar, is from the city of Date. Since the triple-meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, Suda has been working in cooperation with the farmers group to promote produce from the area.