Dairy farmers resume raising calves in Iitate, 1st time since nuclear mishap

17 July 2019

Dairy calves are being raised in the Fukushima Prefecture village of Iitate for the first time since the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and ensuing nuclear accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Daiichi plant. Feliz Latte, a “reconstruction farm” in Fukushima city run mainly by dairy farmers affected by the disaster, began raising calves there from July 16.

Feliz Latte employees and other people concerned brought a herd of 22 calves, about eight months old, to a cowshed in the Kusano district owned by a village-run agricultural development corporation.

The calves, not yet old enough to be milked, will be raised until they reach about 20 months old, when they will be returned to the Fukushima farm. The group plans to raise about 100 calves in the village by the end of the year.

Feliz Latte used to have some calves raised by farmers in Hokkaido. Now that a facility is in place in Iitate, the farm can reduce costs, such as transport expenses.

Besides calf breeding, compost production will also be undertaken at the village cowshed, among other projects. The group hopes these moves will help other villagers resume farming and make other contributions to local development.

【Photo】Workers bring dairy calves to a cowshed in Iitate village.

(Translated by Kyodo News)