The majority of foodstuffs in human consumption are farm products. The radioactive materials in the natural food chain are effectively migrated into milk through feed. Milk consumption in Finland is high, so monitoring the levels of radioactive materials in milk is vital.
The samples are collected from dairies in Joensuu, Jyväskylä, Oulu, Riihimäki and Seinäjoki. Samples are collected on a daily basis. STUK combines the samples each month, after which they are analyzed.
The Cs-137 concentrations in milk have been higher in areas that received the largest levels of Chernobyl fallout. The concentrations of Cs-137 in milk are of a similar level as they were before the Chernobyl accident. The detected concentrations are less than one thousandth of the action level and maximum levels for food trade (1,000 Bq/l) applicable following a radiological emergency within the European Union (87/3954/Euratom, 89/2218/EEC).