Is Turkish food "extremely radioactive"?

Dr Helen Caldicott made the claim that Turkish food is “extremely radioactive,” during a debate with George Monbiot on Democracy Now a few days ago. The radioactivity is supposed to be due to the Chernobyl accident. My ears perked up since I lived in Istanbul in the late 80s/early 90s. After a little Googling, the only thing I can find that would even remotely support this claim is elevated radioactivity in Turkish tea and hazel nuts in the year or so immediately following Chernobyl. But maybe I am missing something.

Caldicott’s performance in the debate was not such as to inspire confidence in her reliability as a source, but I am open-minded (and easy to scare when it comes to toxicity in the food I eat).

i don’t know about the debate or Turkey.

a few days ago there was a story on how wild boar in Germany are radioactive above a safe consumption level (12X). Austria has boars and deer with unsafe levels (5X). both countries have unsafe mushrooms. France isn’t as bad for boars and mushrooms.

Actually, it isn’t just Turkish food, but most European food.

I’m a little curious about why she is obsessed with Chernobyl instead of the hundreds of nuclear weapons that the Soviet Union exploded. Most of the weapons were tested before November 1962 were above ground tests.

Here is a neat video showing the history of nuclear tests from 1945 to 1998.

I count 175 tests by the Soviet Union and 283 by the United States before the test ban treaty in November 62.

Thanks for the tip. I just checked out the story. About 2 percent of boars test above the legal limit, which is worrying.

It is consistent with the UN-commissioned report on Chernobyl which warns against eating forest products and wild game from contaminated areas. But what about food in general?

Whoa. The link you gave suggests Caldicott won’t eat any food from Europe. What solid evidence is there to suggest that this is reasonable?

I’d rather buy glow in the dark European food over that corn-infested crap we eat.

The only radioactive food I know if is Indian food + alcohol.

yup, that was a lame potty joke.

If by “extremely radioactive” you mean “fucking delicious”, then yes.

ETA: Caldicott sounds like a looper. Ignore.

None that I know of. Did my post not make it clear that I consider Helen Caldicott a crank?

I’m not sure it’s right to say “unsafe”. The safety limits set by government presumably err on the side of caution. It wouldn’t surprise me if these limits were orders of magnitude lower than those shown to cause harm. Anyway, someone who eats one boar steak at 12 times the limit will receive the same dose as someone who eats 12 boar steaks that are certified safe.

Are there any large-scale studies on how radioactive food from various regions is? It would be interesting to know what food radioactivity actually correlates with.

The radioactivity of German and Austrian game has nothing to do with Chernobyl - it’s because the Schwartzenwald (Black Forest) is naturally radioactive, due to uranium depoosits.

Anyway, it’s no worse than a day in the sun.

But the wild boar in France is alright, right? Because I worry for Obelix.

Well, at the risk of getting burned for bringing media politics into this, you have to remember that Democracy Now is kind of the like the Fox News of the left (and I say that as someone who believes most everything else on public radio is fairly unbiased). So yeah, I’d take anything they have to say about this with a grain of salt.

The last Scottish sheep farm was finally declared safe only last summer; some areas of England and Wales apparently still have movement controls in effect on some stock.

That’s right, because everything from Europe is better than anything from America.:rolleyes:

It wasn’t the magic potion after all — they all had radioactivity-induced superpowers.

Hmm. All the news stories I could find suggested the source of the radioactivity was cesium-137 from Chernobyl. Could you direct me toward a source?

Thanks. This is something I didn’t know about. I assume the FSA is monitoring it pretty closely so consumers don’t have to worry about eating contaminated meat, though. Or am I being naive?

Yeah, here’s an article from the renowned German magazine Der Spiegel, confirming that the contamination is caused by cesium-137 from Chernobyl. And the problem doesn’t only affect the wild pigs living in the Schwarzwald:

TV programmes like Landward and Countryfile have covered the situation over the years and the impression I gained is that there were regular checks at least annually, if only because the Scottish Farmers Union kept pushing for controls to be lifted as quickly as was safe.
I don’t really know about the English & Welsh cases, although I assume it would be the same course of action being taken and the same safety guidelines being applied.

I was actually out hillwalking on the (lovely sunny) day that the worst of the Chernobyl cloud blew over Central Scotland but didn’t know it at the time, and I’m not aware of any effects it’s had on me!