Cucumber producers in Europe have been defiantly eating their produce to prove they are not the source of the bloc’s worst E.coli out break.
But with 16 people now dead and more than 1,000 ill in Germany, Sweden and other countries, there is a scramble to find out were the deadly bacteria is coming from.
In Hamburg, where the outbreak first became apparent, blame levelled at imported Spanish cucumbers is being questioned.
Hamburg State Health Minister, Cornelia Pruefer-Storks told reporters:
“I can tell you so far that two of the four cucumbers we found E.coli on carry an E.coli pathogen, however not the type 0104 which would explain the serious complications, the illnesses here in Hamburg.”
But the damage has already been done to Spain’s vegetable growers and now even the country’s freight companies are being hit.
Meanwhile there are diplomatic tensions between EU members as some begin banning vegetable imports to raise consumer confidence.