No bacteria-infected vegetables from two Spanish producers, Pepino Bio Frunet and Hort o Fruticola, or the German distribution company, Turan Gastronomie-Service, have been found in Slovakia, according to the inspections carried out by the State Veterinary and Food Administration in shops around the country, Juraj Kadaš from the Agriculture Ministry press department told the TASR newswire on May 30.
Slovak food inspectors carried out 33 checks in shops and distribution stores to date, involving more than 420,000 kilos of fruit and vegetables imported from Spain. The inspections follow reports of ten deaths and around 1,000 infected or possibly infected people in Germany who fell ill after eating cucumbers from Spain that were later found to contain EHEC bacteria. Slovak authorities are inspecting not only cucumbers, but also tomatoes, lettuce, peppers and other fruits and vegetables.
If cucumbers contaminated with the E. coli bacteria appear in Slovakia, the Public Health Office (ÚVZ) will act, Health Minister Ivan Uhliarik said on Friday.
The Agriculture Ministry on May 27 received information from the European warning system on products contaminated with bacteria from Spain that were discovered in Germany.
Agriculture Minister Zsolt Simon said the bacteria were not inside the cucumbers but on the surface. "It's therefore necessary to wash the vegetables thoroughly to avoid spreading this disease, but in general [it's a good idea]," said Simon.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
31. May 2011 at 10:00