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Research project

Radioactivity in Food and the Environment (RIFE) report 2019

The annual Radioactivity in Food and the Environment (RIFE) report 2019 shows that the level of man-made radioactivity to which people in the UK are exposed remained below the legal limit.

The FSA, along with the UK’s environmental regulators and Food Standards Scotland are delighted to present the 25th anniversary edition of the Radioactivity in Food and the Environment (RIFE) report. This year marks a quarter of a century since the landmark RIFE report was first published by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in 1996; the first joint monitoring and assessment report for the whole of the UK.

This report covers sampling and analysis carried out in 2019 as part of the radiological monitoring programme. The main purpose of the programme is to make sure that discharges from the UK nuclear sites do not cause unacceptable exposure to radioactivity through our food.

Key findings

The key findings of the RIFE report 2019 are:

  • the total radiation dose to members of the public in the UK is significantly below the annual dose limit of 1 millisievert for all exposures
  • the exposure of consumers to radioactivity in 2019 was similar than in 2018 for the majority of nuclear sites

Where the results come from

The report combines our monitoring results with those of the Environment Agency, Natural Resources Wales the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Food Standards Scotland. It brings together our data on food from habits surveys and data on environmental sources of radioactivity to provide a comprehensive picture for people who live close to nuclear sites and eat locally produced food.