After one of the most catastrophic natural disasters of recent years, there has been some speculation about nuclear radiation in products exported from Japan. Several countries, as well as the EU, have called for testing and certification of Japanese products prior to export, though this has yet to be controlled at a government level in Japan.
One of the top importers and bottlers of Japanese whisky, Number One Drinks Company, has voluntarily sent off samples of whisky to a Government-approved testing centre in Japan, to reassure its global customer base. The concerns about radiation are based on a partial meltdown at the Fakushuima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant, which is more than 250km away from Karuizawa and Chicibu (where there are also stocks of Kawasaki and Hanyu whisky).
Samples have been collected from each warehouse at every distillery for which Number One is the exclusive exporter, and amongst these were a single cask 1984 Karuizawa, and a Kawasaki distilled in 1982. The samples were tested for three radio-nuclides (Iodine 131, Caesium 134 and Causium 137), and we are happy to announce that none were detected.
The Tokyo-based Managing Director of Number One hopes the tests will go some way to providing reassurance for the company’s customers. He stated: “We continue to monitor the situation carefully and will work together with the Japanese authorities to facilitate export of these whiskies as the necessary documentation becomes available.”
- The Chaps at Master of Malt -