Spain claims 80 million euros for cucumber crisis

6th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Spain now says it will claim 80 million euros ($115 million) in European Union compensation for the cucumber crisis, far less than it first estimated.

The Spanish government will claim the money to compensate its industry after Germany wrongly blamed Spanish cucumbers for a deadly E. coli outbreak, Agriculture Minister Rosa Aguilar said Tuesday.

In May, Hamburg's health authority said Spanish cucumbers were the source for the outbreak of E. coli poisoning, which has killed 48 people so far. Germany later said vegetable sprouts were to blame.

The cucumber warning prompted an EU-wide alert and dealt Spanish growers a heavy blow as sales slumped across the 27-nation bloc. Producers in other countries were also been hit.

Spain's fruit and vegetables exporters association, FEPEX, had estimated losses as high as 225 million euros a week. And a growers association, COAG, said Spain's losses amounted to 350 million euros in total.

© 2011 AFP

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