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Brussels, 4 June 2011

E Coli outbreak in Germany: Commission looks forward to concrete and fruitful discussion in upcoming Health Council

On the eve of the EPSCO1 Council of Monday 6th June in Luxembourg, Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, John Dalli, stated: "I look forward to a substantive and concrete debate on this important issue in the Health Council to be held the day after tomorrow, in the hope that we can further consolidate our efforts to deal with the E Coli outbreak".

The ongoing investigations to identify the source of the E. Coli outbreak in Germany and the latest public health developments are subject to ongoing contacts between the Commission and the German authorities. This was also the focus of discussions held over the past few days between Health and Consumer Policy Commissioner John Dalli with the German Federal Ministers responsible for Agriculture and Public Health who agreed on the importance of information sharing and on further intensifying both the efforts to identify the source of contamination and co-operation between all interested parties.

Commissioner Dalli expressed the Commission's readiness to dispatch to Germany experts in epidemiology of food borne diseases from his services "Directorate General SANCO", the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the European Food Safety Authority EFSA. Their goal would be to assist the competent German authorities with the ongoing epidemiology, verify the results and contribute to the ongoing investigations to speed up the identification of the source.

In addition the Commission continues to stress that any measures such as bans concerning imports of EU vegetables remain disproportionate.

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Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council

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