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On the other side of the Radiation Grave Danger door is a concrete pathway edged by a six foot think concrete wall The path leads to a small fence surrounding a pool of water 25 feet deep And there submerged in the pool are two large racks of pencil like metal rods that contain radioactive cobalt 60 The water that they sit in absorbs the radioactive energy glows a cobalt blue color The water allows for people to stand in the chamber without getting contaminated Sugarman This explains the inside of a food radiation plant before an irradiation process begins Once the irradiator is in operation the door cant be opened and the pencils are hoisted out of the water and the gamma rays from the cobalt are directed at aluminum totes filled with items to irradiate Sugarman Food Irradiation has become a controversial issue in recent years due to the demand and need for healthy food around the world Well some argue that radiated food causes a health risk others claim that it in fact helps to reduce food spoilage and other health related issues concerning fruits and vegetables Food is irradiated to provide some of the same benefits when it is processed by heat refrigeration freezing or treated with chemicals to destroy insects fungi or bacteria Brennand The radiation used in the food irradiation process consists of high energy gamma rays x-rays and accelerated electrons The radiation sources of cobalt-60 and cesium-137 are the only two that can be used in food irradiation httpuw-food-irradiationengrwisceduprocesshtml Irradiation is not added to food but rather it passes through food like a ray of light httpwwwabout producecomfaqirradiationhtml The idea of food being irradiated is not a new idea of the 21st century in fact irradiated foods have been studied for almost 70 years Radiation treatment was used on strawberries in Sweden in 1916 and the first patent on the idea was taken out in 1921
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