Battle to trace source of E coli outbreak
FIRST, the outbreak of E coli in Germany was blamed on cucumbers. Then beansprouts were suspected. Then doubt was cast on the beansprouts theory.
Some began to question the reality of Germany's legendary efficiency. But there is nothing trivial or comical about E coli, a highly unpleasant and sometimes fatal condition of which we in Ireland have had too much experience. Luckily, most of the outbreaks here were not serious, whereas the German incident has already caused 22 deaths and at least 2,000 other infections.
Health and agriculture officials in the state of Lower Saxony continue to believe strongly that they have identified the source, a farm south of Hamburg. Numerous cases have been reported of persons falling ill -- and one of a woman dying -- after eating beansprouts that supposedly originated on the farm.