Atomik vodka Chernobyl

Chernobyl distillers create Atomik vodka

August 8, 2019
By Alana House

Researchers studying how land around Chernobyl is recovering from the nuclear disaster have created a vodka-style spirit called Atomik from local produce.

The team has been growing rye crops in the exclusion zone and have mixed them with Chernobyl water to make the artisan spirit.

According to one of the researchers, Professor Jim Smith (pictured above), Atomik is perfectly safe to drink.

“This is no more radioactive than any other vodka,” Smith told BBC News.

“Any chemist will tell you, when you distil something, impurities stay in the waste product.

“So we took rye that was slightly contaminated and water from the Chernobyl aquifer and we distilled it.

“We asked our friends at Southampton University, who have an amazing radio-analytical laboratory, to see if they could find any radioactivity.

“They couldn’t find anything – everything was below their limit of detection.”

Atomik vodka; Chernobyl

The Chernobyl Spirit Company hopes to make 500 bottles of Atomik a year and use the profits to help communities in Ukraine still affected by the economic impact of the disaster.

They will initially sell it to the increasing number of tourists who now visit the exclusion zone.

Professor Smith said: “We’ve only got one bottle so far, but I think this is the most important bottle of spirits in the world because it could help the economic recovery of communities living in and around the abandoned areas.

“Many thousands of people are still living in the Zone of Obligatory Resettlement where new investment and use of agricultural land is still forbidden.”

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