BEIJING - China's Ministry of Health said Wednesday that "extremely low levels" of radioactive isotope iodine-131 had been detected in various kinds of vegetables in 12 provincial regions.
The radioactive isotope was found in spinach, asparagus, lettuce, cabbage, Chinese cabbage and other vegetables in Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Shandong, Henan, Hunan, Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan, according to a statement from the ministry.
"The detected amounts pose no threat to public health," said the statement, adding that a sample survey indicated no abnormality in drinking water.
Also on Wednesday, the country's National Nuclear Emergency Coordination Committee said in its daily notice that no obvious change had been found in the levels of radioactive material in the environment in the Chinese mainland.
No protective measures need to be taken against contamination from these materials, the notice said.
As of 8:45 am Wednesday Beijing Time, no obvious changes in the situation had been observed and readings from on-site radiation monitoring posts at the quake-damaged Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan remained stable, according to the notice, quoting the International Atomic Energy Agency's latest report.
On April 11, the Japanese government widened the evacuation zone beyond the 20-km radius of the power plant, encouraging local residents to stay out of some areas 20 to 30 km from the nuclear complex due to health concerns.