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Video: Calming U.S. consumers over Japan food fears

  1. Closed captioning of: Calming U.S. consumers over Japan food fears

    >>> as we mentioned, a lot of folks have questions about food safety . many are wondering which foods we get from japan . just last night, as we said, the feds announced they're halting the import of some foods coming to this country from the affected area of japan . that hasn't stopped people from being concerned about it, though, about fish and produce on store shelves. our report from nbc's kristen welker.

    >> reporter: at this little tokyo grocery store in los angeles , business is brisk. the shelves are stocked with seaweed and fish from japan . the leafy greens are grown locally. owners insist it's all safe.

    >> all that we have here are not affected by the earthquake or nuclear power plant issue.

    >> reporter: the u.s. food and drug administration has banned all vegetable, fruit and milk products from areas impacted by japan 's nuclear crisis.

    >> the step that fda implemented is an additional step in the global food safety net to safeguard the u.s. food supply .

    >> reporter: still, despite reassurances, images of geiger counters testing food scare consumers.

    >> i would not buy them. i'm really afraid of them.

    >> reporter: according to the fda, items from japan constitute about 4% of foods imported to the u.s., mostly seafood, snacks, processed fruit and vegetables, like these mushrooms, popular at this hawaiian grocery store .

    >> if we bring in any type of fresh vegetable, we feel that everything is okay.

    >> reporter: in san diego , sushi chef rob ruiz is calming customers' fears.

    >> people will have a hesitancy.

    >> reporter: but his supplier is not worried.

    >> the typical question is do i have to worry about the fish i buy and the answer is no, it's safe.

    >> reporter: in our supermarkets very little food is actually from japan . this sushi was rolled in california, this soy sauce made in michigan, these greens are locally grown, and so is this fuji apple . and there is heightened alert at ports. regulatory officials add that it takes about eight days for cargo from japan to reach the u.s., and there have been limited shipments since the earthquake. an increased level of oversight, as japan 's nuclear crisis continues. kristen welker, nbc news, los angeles .

Photos: After Japan's earthquake and tsunami - week 8

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  1. A radiation measuring instrument is seen next to some residents in Kawauchimura, a village within the 12- to 18-mile zone around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, on April 28. Most residents of Kawauchimura have evacuated in order to avoid the radiation, but some remain in the area of their own accord. (Koichi Kamoshida / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. A brazier heats the house of Masahiro Kazami, located within a 12-mile radius of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, April 28. (Koichi Kamoshida / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Volunteers help clean a cemetery at Jionin temple in Ishinomaki, Miyagi prefecture, northeastern Japan, on April 29. Many volunteers poured into the disaster-hit region at the beginning of the annual Golden Week holiday. (Hiro Komae / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Japanese government adviser Toshiso Kosako is overcome with emotion during a news conference on April 29 in Tokyo announcing his resignation. The expert on radiation exposure said he could not stay on the job and allow the government to set what he called improper radiation limits for elementary schools in areas near the tsunami-damaged Fukushima nuclear plant. (AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Fuel rods are seen inside the spent fuel pool of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant reactor 4 on April 30. (Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. A volunteer girl from Tokyo works to clean the debris of a house in Higashimatsushima, northern Japan, on April 30. (AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Farmer Tsugio Sato tends to his Japanese pear trees in Fukushima city, May 1. He said he expects to harvest the pears in October. Farmers and businesses face so-called "fuhyo higai," or damages stemming from the battered reputation of the Fukushima brand. (Hiro Komae / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Members of Japan Ground Self-Defense Force in protective gear receive radiation screening in Minamisoma in Fukushima prefecture, after searching for bodies at an area devastated by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. (Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Ruriko Sakuma, daughter of dairy farmer Shinji Sakuma, rubs a cow at their farm in the village of Katsurao in Fukushima prefecture on May 3. Thousands of farm animals died of hunger in the weeks following the quake. (Yoshikazu Tsuno / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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Map: Japan earthquake

  1. Above: Map Japan earthquake
  2. Image: The wave from a tsunami crashes over a street in Miyako City, Iwate Prefecture in northeastern Japan
    Ho / Reuters
    Timeline Crisis in Japan
  3. Interactive Japan before and after the disaster

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