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June 10, 2011

EU: Russia agrees to lift ban on EU vegetable imports

Russia has agreed to lift import bans on produce from the European Union following talks between European Council president Herman Van Rompuy and Russian president Dmitry Medvedev.

Russia has agreed to lift import bans on produce from the European Union following talks between European Council president Herman Van Rompuy and Russian president Dmitry Medvedev.

Van Rompuy said today (10 June) that the two leaders have agreed that the ban of vegetables from the European Union will be lifted and that the “system of certification of the vegetables’ safety by the European Commission will be put in place without any delay”.

The decision follows a two-week spat between the two groups after Russia banned the sale of European fruit and vegetables following a deadly E. coli outbreak in Germany, which has killed 27 people and made almost 3,000 ill.

German authorities initially suspected cucumbers were to blame for the outbreak, but the Russian government suspended all imports of fresh vegetables from the EU.

Today, German authorities blamed the previously suspected bean sprouts for the outbreak. Despite finding no evidence of E. coli on the Bienenbüttel farm, epidemiological studies linked the bean sprouts to the people that had become ill.

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