E. coli outbreak hurting veggie industry

Vegetables Pictures, Images and Photos By now you likely heard about the E. coli outbreak in Europe that is has killed a bunch of people and made many others sick. They know that it came from vegetables (or the water they were treated with) but they don’t know which ones and where exactly they came from. Since they are unable to pinpoint a specific vegetable or farm(s), it is causing the entire European veggie industry to suffer.

At first, Germany blamed cucumbers imported from Spain as the culprit. This caused millions of dollars in damage to the cucumber industry in Spain. Since then, that product was found to be safe, but the damage was already done. It appears that Germany is the epicenter of this outbreak so it is normal for them to initially try to blame another country because they have their own businesses to protect.

This is not a new phenomenon. Every so often there is some food that has a recall due to an outbreak. Generally, the quicker the authorities are able to pinpoint the source of the problem, it limits the economic damage to just that company or product. However, it has been many days now without an exact source and this hurts all veggies throughout Europe and even a little in North America. It also allowed Russia to justify halting imports of all European veggies. They did this partially to protect their citizens, but also partially to help the Russian veggie growers.

Outbreaks such as this one happen more in veggies than in meats or other foods. In addition, veggies are often eaten raw, whereas with meats if you cook it properly, outbreaks shouldn’t harm you. This makes vegetables a little more risky from an investment point of view as well. It’s something to consider for those trading futures of the commodities.