A Spanish European Parliament member, Francisco Sosa Wagner, has appealed for joint efforts to restore vegetable farmers’ reputations. This was during an urgent debate, in Strasbourg, about the E. coli outbreak’s economic consequences, which include massive waste of food and work, compounded by confused and unchecked information.
Wagner suggested that the EU is capable of restoring the respectability of farmers facing ruin when it was not their fault.
Another Spanish member slammed Brussels and Hamburg.
Esther Herranz García said: “There was an extreme lack of coordination. The European Commission did not perform to standard. It must be said that it re-transmitted the irresponsible statements of an inexperienced German politician, who was new to the job and spoke without thinking. The European Commission passed that on without understanding a thing.”
The MEP was talking about the German state of Hamburg’s senator whose portfolio is health: Cornelia Prüfer-Storcks.
One MEP called market priorities and the profit motive in the EU misguided.
Sabine Wils said: “I think the main problem is the systemic failure in the food production. Because we have in the internal market of the European Union lots of industrial food production and the priority is the profit and not the health protection of the consumers.”
Others suggested that neither Germany nor the EU was ready for the outbreak. Health Commissioner John Dalli asked countries to avoid premature conclusions not based on scientific evidence.