European farmers may receive up to 210 mln euros for E. coli crisis

European farmers, whose business was affected by the deadly E. coli outbreak that has killed 26 people, may receive up to 210 million euros in compensation (about $306 million), EU Farm Commissioner Dacian Ciolos said on Wednesday.

Earlier the European Commission proposed paying off 150 million euros ($219 million) to the farmers whose products had rotted in warehouses as Europe suspended the export of vegetables after the deadly E. coli outbreak.

However France and Spain rejected the proposal. The farmers estimate the damage at 417 million euros ($609 million).

“We’ll see how much Spanish producers will ask in compensation,” Ciolos said, adding that payments could be increased if necessary.

The virus of the enterohaemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) broke out in Germany’s second city of Hamburg around three weeks ago and has killed at least 26 people and has infected over 2,200 people and several hundred have developed hemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS), a severe illness that can lead to kidney disease, coma and death.

Russia suspended fruit and vegetable imports from the European Union last week, a move that sparked criticism from EU officials for going against the policies of the World Trade Organization.

Russia also accused Brussels of failing to provide sufficient information about the source of the infection.

BRUSSELS, June 8 (RIA Novosti) 

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