USGC has heard reports of limited loss of animal herds or flocks.

“Since the majority of livestock and poultry farms are located near Japan’s mountain side, or west side of Japan, minimal animal loss is expected. However, logistics of fuels, feed and products continue to be a problem for those farms,” says Hiroko Sakashita, USGC associate director in Japan, adding the USGC anticipates knowing the total impact in a few weeks. “In addition, some animal production was affected, as facilities had to be evacuated due to elevated radiation levels. This market may further be affected by negative perceptions and false information on their products.”

Exposure to radiation will remain a longer-term concern. Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries released a notice alerting livestock farmers to be cautious and not to feed radioactive-material-contaminated hay, roughage, silage and water to livestock. It recommends that farmers keep their animals indoors if possible. According to USGC sources, feed millers in Hokkaido, Chukyo, Kansai and Kyushu have been working around the clock to ensure that sufficient supply of animal feed is available in the damaged area.