Yo! Sushi worst hygiene offender among top restaurant chains
Conveyor-belt noodle chain Yo! Sushi scored worst in meeting basic hygiene standards in an IndependentRead the full article in the Independent >>
Scotland to raise age - and price - for buying alcohol in supermarkets
The Scottish government is planning to raise the minimum age for buying alcohol in supermarkets and off-licences to 21 in a clamp-down on binge-drinking and the associated violence and health problems. There are no plans to change the pub drinking age. It also intends to introduce a minimum price for alcohol which, at an anticipated 40p per unit, would boost the price of the strongest drinks such as super-strength cider and lager by up to 400%. Pat McFadden, the British business minister, has confirmed that the government is considering introducing a minimum price for alcohol in England and Wales. - 15 June, Read the full article in the Sunday Times >>
Mothers to win legal right to breast-feed in restaurants and bars
Bars and restaurants may soon have to allow nursing mothers to breast-feed their babies publicly. New laws to be introduced in Parliament later this year will make it an offence to stop any woman breast-feeding a baby up to six months in age in public places. Mothers can currently face charges under public order or indecency laws. Britain has one of the lowest breast-feeding rates in Europe, with only 25% breast-feeding babies of six months or older. A Cabinet Office spokesman said: "Final decisions have yet to be made, but the government is keen to give new mothers complete confidence to breast-feed while going about their normal business, for example while on the bus or in a cafe." It is not yet decided whether to extend the legal right to women with babies older than six months. Scotland changed the law four years ago with no age limit on the child. - 15 June, Read the full article in the Sunday Times >>
Threats to European bluefin tuna and Welsh cockles The EU has banned trawling for bluefin tuna in the eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean from next week after overfishing by Cyprus, France, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal and Spain caused EU quotas to be exceeded by 25% last year. Meanwhile, the mass deaths of cockles in Burry Inlet near Llanelli off the Gower Peninsula in south Wales is threatening the future of the industry. Local farmers believe that up to 6,000 tonnes of shellfish have died as super-spawning cockles that have grown too fast to survive rot and infect healthy colonies. Scientists from Bangor and Swansea universities believe water pollution may be to blame. - 14 June, The Independent
Super-investor Buffet to step into $46b hostile bid for Budweiser owner
Leading investor Warren Buffet (ranked by Forbes as the world's richest man) is this week expected to step into the $46bn hostile bid by Belgian brewer Inbev for Anheuser-Busch, the US maker of Budweiser beer. The bid has sparked nationalistic opposition to a takeover by a foreign company. Buffet's anticipated involvement follows concerns that a rejection of InBev's offer of $65 a share - 18% higher than Anheuser's previous record - could lead to investor lawsuits against its executive board for breach of fiduciary duty. Buffett owns 5% of Anheuser, a stake that is worth $2.3b at the current offer price. It is believed that InBev may boost its offer by up to $4b to force a quick acceptance. Meanwhile, August Busch has been seeking talks with Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo, which half-owned by Anheuser, to forge a merger to fend off the bid. - 15 June, Read the full article in the Observer >>
Stolichnaya vodka brand gears up for $3b auction
Stolichnaya, one of the world's best-known vodka brands, is set to face an estimated $3b bidding war after Russian firm SPI (which owns the brand and distribution rights) called in Lehman Brothers to find a buyer for its stake in the company. Potential bidders include Brown Forman (which owns Southern Comfort), Bacardi-Martini and Campari. The move follows the collapse of a deal with Pernod Ricard, which took on the distribution rights for Stolichnaya when it bought Britain's Allied Domecq for â¬11b in 2005 but decided to buy Swedish vodka brand Absolut instead. An auction could fall foul of the Russian authorities as current prime minister Vladimir Putin brought legal proceedings against SPI in 2001 to try and bring the brand under state control.
- 15 June, Read the full article in the Sunday Telegraph >>
By Angela Frewin
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