06/06/2011 02:33 EDT | Updated 08/06/2011 05:12 EDT

Europe E. Coli Outbreak Could Hurt Canadian Farmers


THE CANADIAN PRESS -- TORONTO - Some Canadian farmers are concerned the deadly E. coli outbreak in Europe could be bad for business.

The organization that represents Ontario's greenhouse vegetable growers says its 224 members -- who grow tomatoes, cucumbers and bell peppers -- have seen a slight dip in demand on the east coast of North America.

Spokesman George Gilvesy says his organization has received inquiries from the public about what Canadian farmers are doing to ensure food safety.

But he says Ontario growers are required to meet strict food safety requirements and consumers shouldn't be worried.

Gilvesy says it's disconcerting scientists haven't determined the cause of the outbreak that has killed 22 people and sickened more than 2,300 across Europe.

Contaminated cucumbers from Spain and sprouts from northern Germany have been ruled out as the cause but German authorities are warning against eating sprouts, tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce.