Vodka from Tchernobyl

What at first sounds curious and hazardous to health, however, has an important background.

Atomik Vodka
© University of Portsmouth

In a report, Professor Smith and his colleagues in the UK and Ukraine present the results of a three-year research project on the transfer of radioactivity to grain grown in the Chernobyl exclusion zone.

Professor Smith now wants to start a vodka production from grain grown near Chernobyl and return 75 percent of the profits to the affected community. He said, "I think this is the most important bottle of spirits in the world because it could help the communities living in and around the exclusion zone recover economically.

"We don't think the main exclusion zone should be used extensively for agriculture because it is now a conservation area," Professor Smith added. "But there are other areas where people live, but agriculture is still prohibited."

Oleg Nasvit, first deputy head of Ukraine's State Agency for the Management of the Exclusion Zone, said, "We welcome this initiative to use abandoned land to help local communities. It's important that we do everything we can to support the restoration of normal life in these areas, always putting safety first."