Doesn't Pass The Smell Test
"HAMBURG, Germany—The terrifying E. coli outbreak in Europe appears to have been caused by vegetable sprouts grown in Germany, an agriculture official Sunday as the toll climbed to at least 22 dead and more than 2,200 sickened.
Preliminary tests found that bean sprouts and other sprout varieties from an organic farm in the Uelzen area, between the northern cities of Hamburg and Hannover, could be connected to infected people in five German states, Lower Saxony Agriculture Minister Gert Lindemann said.
"There were more and more indications in the last few hours that put the focus on this farm," Lindemann said at a news conference.
Many restaurants involved in the outbreak had received deliveries of the sprouts, which are often used in salads, Lindemann's spokesman, Gert Hahne, told The Associated Press.
Definitive test results should be available Monday, Lindemann said.
In recent days, as health officials tried to pinpoint the source of the unusually lethal outbreak, suspicion fell on lettuce, cucumbers and tomatoes, perhaps from Spain. Spanish farmers complained that the accusations were having a devastating financial effect.
The German farm was shut down Sunday and all of its produce—including fresh herbs, fruits, flowers and potatoes—was recalled. Two of the farm's employees were also infected with E. coli, Lindemann said. He said 18 different sprout mixtures from the farm were under suspicion—including sprouts of mung beans, broccoli, peas, chickpeas, garlic lentils and radishes.
As for how the sprouts became contaminated, Lindemann noted that they are grown with steam in barrels—an ideal environment for bacteria to multiply.
He said it is possible that the water had been contaminated with E. coli or that the sprout seeds—purchased in Germany and other countries—already contained the bacteria. He said the farmers had not used any manure, which has been known to cause E. coli outbreaks.
Lindemann urged Germans to not eat sprouts until further notice. He said authorities could not yet rule out other possible sources and urged Germans to continue avoiding tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce for now.
AP journalists went to the farm on Sunday night, but nobody was available to talk. Telephone messages left at the farm's office were also not returned immediately.
"First it's the 'evil' Spaniards, and then you hear, very surprised, that it is our neighbor," said Dietrich Benni, who lives near the farm. "It's a bit scary all of this, especially that it is coming from an organic place."
He added: "No more organic food for me for now."
When I read this it instantly screamed bullshit. This is just like the hammering the Amish raw milk suppliers got recently. This is all an attempt to unconsciously if they can but at the point of a gun if they have to, force people to eat genetically modified crap. Bovine growth hormone riddled death juice on your corporate cereal.
Think about it - who would be the most careful about the food they distributed, some corporate giant with profits at the top of it's agenda or a small farm that made sure their food was organic? Since this strange strain of e coli bears all the markings of being cobbled together in a laboratory, this new outbreak seems more political than some worker neglecting to wash his hands before messing with some bean sprouts. Any more threats to the world's food supplies and we're going to have to talk seriously about a hidden depopulation agenda. What's next, keeping kids from having lemonade stands?
added - E. Coli Not Found in Initial Testing of Sprouts
"BERLIN — German agriculture officials said Monday that 23 of 40 produce samples from a suspected sprout farm failed to identify E. coli contamination, a finding that adds to the confusion over the source of an outbreak that has killed at least 22 people and left more than 600 in intensive care."