German beansprouts, not Spanish cucumbers, are source of Europe-wide e-coli outbreak

Update 5 June: Not only is it not Spanish produce that is behind the Europe-wide e-coli outbreak, it now appears that it could actually be German produce itself. It is still to be confirmed, but all research in Germany is now focusing on beansprouts grown in a plant nursery south of Hamburg. BBC

Update 31 May 4.20pm: Germany has confirmed that Spanish cucumbers are not at the root of the infection. They say they are now confident that Spanish cucumbers are not the source, having become suspicious that nobody in Spain has contracted the disease. The reaction in Spain is perhaps unprintable, and it’s unnecessary to reaffirm the stance from the post below, namely that the country is seeking compensation from Germany via the European courts. PV,  Frankfurter Allgemeine

Update 31 May: Lidl has suspended sales of all cucumbers, regardless of their source, in its Spanish stores. The ban has been in place since Thursday after details emerged of the outbreak in Germany, which has been attributed to Spanish cucumbers by Hamburg authorities.

The Spanish minister of Medio Ambiente y Medio Rural y Marino, Rosa Aguilar, stressed on Monday that Spain will not tolerate the damage being done to the sector, and has asked Germany for clarification on the transport and distribution of stocks.

Spain will be asking the EU for assistance to alleviate the losses caused to the horticultural sector, which are now estimated to be in the region of 200 million Euros a week.  El Dia

Original post 26 May: Germany has been suffering an E. coli food poisoning outbreak over the past couple of weeks which is now thought to have resulted in the deaths of three people and to have infected hundreds more. A further 350 cases are suspected. The EU Health Commissioner John Dalli says that potential cases in the UK, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands were also being investigated.

Now, today, the source is said to have been identified as Spanish cucumbers. Canarian exporters are up in arms at the allegation, roundly denying that it could be due to vegetables from these islands. Nonetheless, cucumbers from the Canaries or the mainland are what we buy here, so it’s perhaps best to take the German health advice on board. This is to avoid cucumbers altogether, and generally be careful with raw vegetables. C24H, BBC, DW-world

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