EU: Growers and industry hit by $1.3 bn in losses due to 2011 outbreak of E. Coli
Food Safety News: The World Health Organization (WHO) has totaled up some economic costs of the 2011 outbreak of the rare and deadly E. coli O104:H4 centered on Northern Europe. Farmers and industries lost $1.3 billion, and emergency aid provided to 22 European states cost another $236 million, according to WHO.
The novel E. coli strain was the cause of the May through June 2011 outbreak that saw 3,950 people infected, with 53 deaths blamed on the deadly pathogen. All but two of the deaths occurred in Germany.
Public health officials in Germany initially thought the source of the contamination was cucumbers imported from Spanish greenhouses, but that theory proved incorrect. It was a mistake that Spanish growers said cost them $200 million a week. Russia banned imports of all EU fresh produce in June 2011.