Germany: E Coli traced to bean sprouts


The E coli outbreak in Northern Germany has been traced to a single bean-sprout farm near Hamburg, John Dalli, European commissioner in charge of health and consumer policy, confirmed Saturday.

German authorities on Friday had said that tests on the bean sprouts from the organic farm had been matched to the strain responsible for the deadly bacterial infection.

“I welcome this extremely important development. The source of contamination is now identified, and the epidemiological findings are backed by laboratory results,” Mr. Dalli said Saturday. “EU consumers and trade partners shall now have full confidence as regards the safety of EU’s vegetables.”

Authorities will now investigate how the specific E. coli strain got into the food chain.

The commission services have been working to implement the political agreement reached Friday at the Russia-EU summit for Russia’s lifting of its ban on EU vegetable imports and the introduction of a certification system. Exports should resume “as soon as possible,” the statement said.