"Early and close co-operation needed on food scares" - de Brún
Speaking today from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, regarding the ongoing debate on the E.coli outbreak in Germany, Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún said:
"First of all let me extend my deepest sympathies to those affected by the E.coli outbreak, both those who have lost loved ones, and those whose health has been affected by this crisis.
"Clearly, there are lessons to be learnt from this outbreak. In times of crisis affecting food safety there must be early and close co-operation between countries and at EU level. We must act swiftly to avoid confusion and also to uncover the source of the problem.
"We must be careful to pinpoint the exact source and not to endanger the livelihood of those farmers who constantly employ safe farming practices. All decisions and statements must be based on scientific facts. We must continue to work on the enforcement of labeling and traceability legislation.
"Lastly, I welcome today's meeting of EU Agriculture ministers and hope that it brings practical and fast acting solutions to deal with this crisis and to prevent anything like this happening in the future
"The European Commission has proposed a €150m package to aid farmers affected. However Spanish authorities are indicating that their exporters' losses may amount to over €200m a week."