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Friday, 3 June 2011

Salad Days

Like something out of a science fiction movie, perhaps starring Charlton Heston, Europe is in the grip of a new form of deadly bacterial infection transmitted apparently on raw produce (tomatoes, cucumbers, salad, etc.).  Ground Zero is Northern Germany, but death and illness have radiated out as far as the UK and America.  For the last week, a billion-dollar farming industry has ground to a halt - Russia has banned all vegetables and fruit from Europe; and no one is buying or eating fresh, uncooked vegetables.  The question I have is: how long can this go on before malnutrition sets in?  What seems like precaution or prevention, now, will soon be a diet no one can survive.  Europeans will have to go back to eating their greens.  But who wants to when the potentially lethal strain has yet to be located?  What are the vegetarians of Europe doing?  The crisis will hopefully diminish soon - but some scientists predict the source may never be known.  Cucumber sandwiches, the mainstay of the polite English summer, will never be the same again.
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