Labour calls for legislation on sugar, salt and fat

first_imgThe Labour Party has called on the government to enforce stricter legal levels of sugar, salt and fat content in the food industry, as current administration launches a new health awareness campaign.Andy Burnham, shadow health secretary, has asked the government to consider introducing legal limits on such ingredients, instead of the current voluntary agreements used by the food industry, to tackle ongoing issues of child obesity in Britain.He said: “The government has failed to come up with a convincing plan to tackle this challenge. If we fail to act on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s warning we are storing up huge problems for the country and the NHS in the long-term. That is why Labour is calling for new thinking and why we’re initiating today’s consultation.”Labour has published a Policy Review document entitled ‘Children, food and obesity’, which looks at tackling child obesity to improve the nation’s health, including the idea to implement a new maximum permitted levels of fat, sugar and salt in food aimed at children.The document comes as new research, published in recent weeks by the OECD, shows that in the UK 26.6% of girls and 22.7% of boys are considered overweight or obese.The Department of Health in England has said its Responsibility Deal with food companies shows the voluntary approach can be successful.Labour’s call to action has come at the same time as the government has launched its Be Food Smart campaign, aiming to expose the hidden levels of sugar, salt and fat in food.The scheme will include a collaboration between television network ITV, food manufacturers and advertising from Change4Life, which will host the first health-focused advertising break takeover, starting tonight (7 January).It will highlight specific facts, such as a large pizza containing more than a wine glass of fat, to help make consumers more aware of what is in their food.The television advertising break campaign will also feature food businesses Asda and The Co-operative Food, and will include a range of healthy eating tools and information, from recipes to money-off vouchers.Anna Soubry, public health minister, who launched the campaign, said: “Making healthier, balanced meals on a budget can be a challenge for families. This new Change4Life campaign offers families free healthy recipes and money off those much-needed cupboard essentials to encourage everyone to try healthy alternatives.“Thanks to the continuing success of Change4Life, a million mums have changed their behaviour.  But England has one of the highest rates of obesity in Europe, with over 60% of adults and a third of 10- and 11-year-olds overweight or obese.“We want to make it easy for everyone to keep track of what they eat and make healthier choices. That is why we are also developing a simple and clear system for front-of-pack labelling that everyone can use.”The campaign will also see the launch of a new smartphone and tablet application, featuring a meal mixer and a shopping list function to help people make healthy choices in the supermarket.last_img

Full Audio From Gov’t Mule & Friends’ Star-Studded Set At The Peach Has Emerged [Listen]

first_imgSETLIST: Gov’t Mule & Friends | The Peach Music Festival | Montage Mountain | Scranton, PA Traveling Tune > Stone Cold Rage, Revolution Come, Revolution GoCan’t You See#Soulshine* >Night Time Is The Right Time*Devil Likes It Slow+Which Way Do We Run+Hottentot^Kind Of Bird^Traveling Tune >Cortez The Killer%# w/ Marcus King & Jack Pearson* w/ Chuck Leavell & John Scofield+ w/ John Scofield^ w/ John Scofield & Marc Quiñones% w/ Jimmy Herring & John Bell[h/t – JamBuzz][Cover photo via Heath Robson/Gov’t Mule Facebook] This past Saturday, August 12th, following his appearance in The Peach Music Festival‘s all-star tribute to Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks, Warren Haynes took the stage with Gov’t Mule and a slew of special guests for an equally talent-packed “Gov’t Mule & Friends” set.Peach Fest Hosts Legendary Tribute To Gregg Allman And Butch Trucks, Widespread, Mule, And MoreAfter opening with three cuts off latest album, Revolution Come, Revolution Go, Gov’t Mule moved into a cover of The Marshall Tucker Band‘s “Can’t You See”, which featured sit-ins by Marcus King and Jack Pearson. Once King and Pearson had left the stage, Warren’s fellow Allman Brothers Band vet Chuck Leavell and guitar legend John Scofield joined the band for a heartfelt rendition of “Soulshine,” which segued into “Night Time Is The Right Time.”Revolutions Come And Revolutions Go, But Warren Haynes Is Here To Stay [Interview/Album Stream]Leavell then left the stage, while Scofield remained for renditions of “Devil Likes It Slow” and “Which Way Do We Run.” Next, former Allmans percussionist Marc Quiñones joined the Sco-Mule configuration onstage for  performances of “Hottentot” and “Kind of Bird.” The band followed that up with a reprise of “Traveling Tune,” the road-weary Revolution Come…Revolution Go lament that opened the set. Finally, Mule pulled out their final surprise of the evening–Widespread Panic guitarists John Bell and Jimmy Herring–who helped lead the band through an incredible cover of Neil Young classic “Cortez The Killer” to close the show.You can listen to the full Gov’t Mule & Friends set from The Peach 2017 below courtesy of taper Ted Gakidis (uploaded by JamBuzz):You can also check out footage of Marcus King and Jack Pearson joining Mule for “Can’t You See” below, via YouTube user Sean Roche:last_img

Bees on the brink

first_img Pesticide found in 70 percent of Massachusetts’ honey samples Related HSPH research finds effect at low levels Pesticide tied to bee colony collapse “When temperatures drop, bees lock their wings down and shiver their muscles to generate heat,” Crall said. “What we found was that, in control colonies, even as the temperature fluctuated widely, they were able to keep the temperature in the colony steady to within a few degrees. But the exposed bees, they pretty dramatically lose the capacity to regulate temperature.”The experiment also revealed that pesticide exposure impacted bees’ ability to build an insulating wax cap over the colony.“Almost all of our control colonies built that cap,” Crall said. “And it seems to be totally wiped out in the pesticide-exposed colonies, so they lose this capacity to do this functional restructuring of the nest.”Going forward, Crall said, there are some additional questions the study raised that he hopes to address.“This work — especially on thermoregulation — opens up a new set of questions, not just about what the direct effects of pesticides are, but how those pesticides impair the ability of colonies to cope with other stressors,” he said. “This work suggests that, in particularly extreme environments, we might expect the effects of pesticides to be worse, so it changes both how we go about practically testing agrochemicals in general, but it points to specific questions about whether we might see stronger declines in certain environments.”Taken together, Crall believes the findings point to the need for tighter regulation of neonicotinoids and other pesticides that may be impacting bees.“I think we’re at a point where we should be very, very concerned about how the ways in which we’re changing the environment are undercutting and decimating insect populations that are important not only for the function of every ecosystem … but that are very important for food production,” he said. “Today about a third of food crops are dependent on pollinators, and that’s only rising. Up until now, we’ve had this abundant, natural gift of pollinators doing all this work for us, and now we’re starting to realize that isn’t a given.”In addition to Crall, de Bivort, and Naomi Pierce, the Sidney A. and John H. Hessel Professor of Biology, the study was co-authored by Callin Switzer, Ph.D. ’18; Stacey Combes from University of California, Davis; former organismic and evolutionary biology research assistants Robert L. Oppenheimer and Mackay Eyster; and Harvard undergraduate Andrea Brown ’19.This research was supported with funding from Biobest, the National Science Foundation, the Winslow Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship Program, the Moore and Sloan Foundations, a Sloan Research Fellowship, a Klingenstein-Simons Fellowship Award, and the Statistical and Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute. Harvard study says it’s among class of pesticides implicated in Colony Collapse Disorder For bees, being social is everything.Whether it’s foraging for food, caring for the young, using their bodies to generate heat or to fan the nest, or building and repairing nests, a bee colony does just about everything as a single unit.While recent studies have suggested exposure to pesticides could have impacts on foraging behavior, a new study, led by James Crall, has shown that those effects may be just the tip of the iceberg.A postdoctoral fellow working in the lab of Benjamin de Bivort, the Thomas D. Cabot Associate Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Crall is the lead author of a study that shows exposure to neonicotinoid pesticides (the most commonly used class of pesticides in agriculture) has profound effects on a host of social behaviors.Following exposure to the pesticide, bees spent less time nursing larvae and were less social than other bees. The bees’ behavior was observed using an innovative robotic platform, which also showed that exposure impaired bees’ ability to warm the nest, and to build insulating wax caps around the colony.The study is described in a Nov. 9 paper in Science.,“These pesticides first came into use around the mid-1990s, and are now the most commonly used class of insecticide around the globe,” Crall said. “Typically, they work through seed treatment — high concentrations are dosed on seeds, and one reason farmers and pesticide companies like these compounds is because they are taken up systemically by the plants … so the idea is they provide whole-plant resistance. But the problem is they also show up in the pollen and nectar bees are feeding on.”Over the past decade, Crall said, a number of studies have linked pesticide exposure with disruptions in foraging, “but there were reasons to suspect that wasn’t the whole picture.”“Foraging is only a part of what bumblebees do,” Crall read more

John H. Shaw steps down

first_img Learning to find ‘quiet’ earthquakes John H. Shaw, the Harry C. Dudley Professor of Structural and Economic Geology, stepped down at the end of June, having served as chair of the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences (EPS) since 2006.Shaw, who joined the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in 1997 and is also a professor of environmental science and engineering at the John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), is a structural geologist and applied geophysicist who studies the nature of faults in the earth’s crust as they relate to energy systems and natural hazards, particularly earthquakes. One of the key directions of research for Shaw’s lab is the scientific visualization of models of the Earth’s structures around energy systems and active faults. He co-chairs the board of the Southern California Earthquake Center. Shaw also help found the EPS’s Visualization Research and Teaching Lab.Reflecting upon Shaw’s 13 years as chair, Jeremy Bloxham, the Mallinckrodt Professor of Geophysics, whose tenure as dean of FAS Science coincided with Shaw’s time as EPS chair, noted that, “John’s extraordinarily successful shepherding of the department was built upon a foundation of leading by example: his outstanding teaching, his groundbreaking research, but most of all the incredible respect he showed for everyone in the department — the undergraduates, the graduate students, the administrative and research staff, and the faculty.”Shaw talked to the Gazette about mentoring, virtual reality labs, and how climate change has shaped the curriculum.Q&AJohn H. ShawGAZETTE: It’s almost impossible to say the word “Earth” nowadays without thinking immediately of energy and climate change.SHAW: There’s always been a close connection between Earth science and geology and societally relevant issues. In the context of climate change, there’s not only a research mandate to understand this complex natural system and the ways in which we’re impacting it, but there’s also an important role to educate people about what we know and what we don’t know, and with that uncertainty, [to think about] how we can make good decisions that are going to protect our planet and ourselves.GAZETTE: How is this shaping the undergraduate curriculum in EPS?SHAW: When it comes to energy and the environment, students are increasingly aware of what’s going on in the world around them, and they are bringing these interests into the classroom. As a relatively small program, we expanded our Gen Ed offerings in recognition that issues of Earth science are pressing issues in society. We want to give students the opportunity to be educated about these topics, even if they are not pursuing our field. We also changed our model of introductory courses. It used to be there was a single introductory course, or set of courses, required of all students, but that model created a barrier to entry. Something that we’ve done to reflect the spirit of an environmental science and engineering advising cluster is that we now offer a wider sweep of introductory courses for students to take that reflect their particular interests. There are more ways into a concentration than there used to be.GAZETTE: Data visualization is essential to your research and teaching. How has the VR and teaching lab contributed to your scholarship?SHAW: My research involves scientific visualization of Earth models that we build describing both energy systems and active faults — things that lie below the surface so we can’t see them with the naked eye. There’s a real importance to having a virtual reality that describes these geological structures and systems, because we want to understand and predict their behaviors and to inform people about them.We developed the visualization laboratory more than a decade ago and at first it was dedicated to our research. It’s now become a powerful tool for teaching science in a way that’s much more interactive. The lab also has had applications beyond EPS, helping faculty and students across the University to conduct their scholarship and teaching.During the past decade we’ve partnered with the FAS Science Education program and a number of different groups to support a staff that enables use of the lab and associated VR resources across a range of disciplines. For example, we’ve partnered with Peter Der Manuelian for his course on Egyptology, enabling students to virtually be present in the Giza Plateau, and this past year we had new applications, including virtual field trips to Mars and French language classes in Paris.GAZETTE: EPS, together with environmental science and engineering, has recently created a Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Committee. Why was this important for you as chair?SHAW: We want to be sure that we are providing a teaching and learning environment that is as welcoming as possible to all members of our community. If you’re trying read more

Vermont Tax Revolt

first_imgMost of Vermonts Legislature and many in its media and the general intelligentsia do not really believe our state faces a serious crisis regarding our tax burden or economy; lets look at the facts.As leader of Vermont Tax Revolt found at www.VermontTaxRevolt.org(link is external) this recently formed grassroots organization is composed of nonpartisan-seeking citizens who are concerned not only with Vermonts weighty tax burdens, but with what we see as ominous signs of worse things to come. As our web site voluminously lists, lets look at some of those more troubling danger signals should give pause and reflection to all Vermonters.Vermont is in a demographic free-fall: Vermonts share of people aged 25 to 29 is the lowest in the nation while its share of people aged 50 to 54 is the highest in the country; Vermont has the lowest birthrate in the nation; Vermonts young people leave our state at 4 times the national average; and lastly, because of an anomaly of birth cycles, in approximately 2012, our school population will actually begin to increase just as our aging population and their income tax dollars begin to retire, causing what the Ethan Allen Institutes Off The Rails report terms our coming train wreck. Between 2000 and 2006, Vermont lost 11,000 quality private sector jobs and found 20,000 new jobs; 65% of which came from either government (4,000) or from the education and health services field (9,000) and these mostly in the field of social assistance. This is an unsustainable tread: our taxpaying businesses shrink, leaving our remaining private sector businesses and home owners to support a growing government and non-profit sector. In addition to these two major demographic and economic challenges, the Vermont Tax Revolt organization has identified at least $3.5 billion of unfunded liabilities and expenses facing Vermont taxpayers, all of which are identified on its web site.This October witnessed the first of almost 80 million baby boomers that will file for retirement in the coming years. In addition to the projected $50 trillion deficit facing Medicare and Social Security, these retirees will be cashing in their IRA’s and 401k’s. This demographic tsunami will result in an enormous amount of claims on the goods and services of this nation, and if output in the form of the goods and services that these retirees demand doesn’t at least keep pace with this demand – shortages and inflation will occur. Imports may seem like a viable option, but if we’re not producing the wealth to pay for them, we’ll just be adding to our deficit spending. Drilling down to Vermont’s economic and demographic crisis, Senator Shumlin is on record as stating that “Vermonters do not have the additional earning capacity to raise [even] $250 – $350 million.” In order for Vermont to keep pace with the claims on its economy, entitlements and transportation infrastructure needs, it must abandoned its preoccupation with its culture of distribution and redistribution of wealth and embrace a culture of producing real wealth, not just financial claims on it. Over time, tax revenues are determined by economic and productivity growth.With our young sons and daughters fleeing Vermont at 4 times the national average, with quality private sector job growth almost nonexistent along with the general lack of affordability for the average, working middle-class family and Vermont taxpayers facing at least $3.5 billion of unfunded liabilities and expenses, the facts just dont validate denial of the obvious any longer.Winston Churchill said it best: The multitudes remained plunged in ignorance of the simplest economic facts, and their leaders, seeking their votes, did not dare to undeceive them.Folks, its time to awaken this sleeping giant.Tom Licata leads Vermonts citizen-led grassroots organization, found at www.VermontTaxRevolt.org(link is external). He lives in Burlington.last_img

Email platform costs at your credit union

first_img 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Email marketing platforms typically cost between $40,000 and $50,000 annually, according to CUES member Kenneth Jost, senior AVP/marketing at $3.8 billion/380,000-member Redstone Federal Credit Union, Huntsville, Ala., who adds, “Most vendors offer a not-for-profit discount that makes the technology more feasible for credit unions.”Cost also depends on the level of service required, as well as on the number of subscribers in the email list, says Jesse Boyer, president/CEO of CUES Supplier member and strategic partner DigitalMailer, Inc., Herndon, Va.“Bigger credit unions generally have the internal resources to handle all aspects of email marketing; smaller or mid-sized ones don’t. So it’s important to know what they can handle in house and what kind of support they need,” he says.Ray Parenteau, founder/president of ClickRSVP, Milford, Mass., breaks out the different levels of service like this: continue reading »last_img

How Shastic Index digs deep to discover hidden millennial needs

first_img 9SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Nearly every industry on the planet is trying to better understand the Millennials. So if anybody can get a leg up to get a better read on this group, it can be a boon for any business. Fintech startup Shastic Index just might be the firm that allows that better read.So we invited Shastic’s CEO Joseariel Gomez on the show to get an inside look at how his index works and how it can dig deep to discover hidden needs the Millennials desire — new stuff nobody knows about yet. We asked Joseariel what kind of information it can provide credit unions, along with how it will benefits, goals, and where it’s headed.Check it out and let us know your thoughts. continue reading »last_img

The critical mindset of the board member

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » Speech is the primary mode of communication in the boardroom. It is extremely important for board members to be able to articulate their thoughts and opinions in a thoughtful and articulate manner. So, would it surprise you if I said that a big component of boardroom communication is knowing when to be silent?The process of thinking before speaking impacts the quality of the board’s discussion. If we speak without thinking about the concepts and principles of the subject, we may produce an impression that we want to derail the conversation, consciously or unconsciously. When we study and assess what we think about the subject, the quality of our conversation will be focused, relevant and result in more informed board decisions.Prepare for the board meeting: Internalize firstThe board packet provides updates to strategic initiatives, financial status and other essential items. Board members should receive this at least a week in advance of each meeting. The care (or lack thereof) with which each board member reviews the board packet and prepares for the meeting can add to or detract from the quality of relationships within the board, the outcome of the board meeting and, ultimately, the performance of the organization.last_img

Why train as a waiter, when a waiter can be anyone?

first_imgLack of manpower is a problem that has been screaming for years and it was only a matter of time before that bubble burst and when we would find ourselves in the current situation.Simple – the whole system was not self-sustaining. The worker, ie the man who is the most valuable resource as well as the key to success in tourism, was at the very bottom of the value. Consumer goods. The mantra was simple. It doesn’t matter if the employee returns next year, there is a high demand for seasonal jobs, so let’s squeeze every person over the endurance limit as well. A new one will come tomorrow and so on in a circle.We have ruined the profession – anyone can be a waiterMarkantun de Dominis High School Rab managed to enroll only two future waiters this year, and Ambroz Haračić High School Mali Lošinj this year failed to enroll any students in the profession. Thus, in three years, only 33 educated waiters will get the Primorje-Gorski Kotar labor market, because so many of them will sit in the benches of five high schools that implement programs for this profession this school year, writes New sheet.Does that worry anyone?Who are the waiters in today’s job market? Everyone, so anyone can be a waiter, right? If I can’t find anything, I can always waiter – is a mantra that has become established in Croatia.Because of this whole story, the poor position of the market and the education system, the degradation and underestimation of the entire profession of waiter and chef is not an interesting occupation among young people. Admittedly, in the past couple of years through various TV show programs the interest in chefs has risen to a well-deserved position and that being a chef is not easy, but also that good chefs are appreciated and paid, and even stars. But again, it was not strategic or systematic, but a product of the media, ie media popularization.On the other hand, the waiter is still such a degraded profession that it has been reduced to very low branches. Being a good and top waiter cannot be everyone and one should have a broad knowledge, especially when we are talking about a higher level of service through the HoReCa channel. One should know how to talk to guests, one should know how to make good coffee, twice in a row, know the philosophy of wine and how it blends with food, one should know how to sell wine as a story and all the manners of a good waiter. If we are educating ourselves through high school for a waiter for three years, we need to know at least two foreign languages, if not three, and they all need to be baristas and sommelier. Wine is not black or white! What does our education system do for three years with students it “educates” to be professional waiters?Can a waiter as a barista have a higher salary? Or as a sommelier? Will it pay off to invest in additional education, ie will he therefore have a higher salary? No, because no one cares, of course some exceptions.Salaries for waiters are usually minimal, and the rest again on the black market or on hand. Quality is not looked at, and any effort invested in additional education, the waiter can not charge. And finally, can any waiter or chef work in a top hotel or restaurant. Of course not. Not everyone can be a waiter, we need quality and experienced people, who we must also pay well.Of course this year we are witnessing various anomalies in the context that restaurant and cafe owners are offering “big” salaries and no one will be working. But that is only a consequence because we have lost confidence, destroyed the profession and the skilled workforce. But still, no matter what, we can witness that even this season there were again low wages and poor working conditions, ie one was agreed over the phone, and the other is when you come to work.The market is in chaos, and while we are thinking and whining, the competition from Germany, Ireland, Slovenia and Austria is not sleeping, in fact, they are opening offices in Croatia and attracting diligent, experienced, hardworking and respected Croatian workers with better working conditions and salaries. Throughout the story, it is quite clear how wages and working conditions should be raised, and the State must reduce VAT in tourism as well as other levies that burden entrepreneurship.last_img

Join the military to use an AR-15

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion I recently read an article in your paper detailing the rise in popularity of the AR-15, which traced its history back to the M-16 used by our soldiers in Vietnam. As a hunter and gun owner (and 30-year Army veteran), I can’t fathom why any responsible rifle enthusiast would want or need to own this rifle. There certainly are hundreds of alternative rifles that are more suitable for hunting or target shooting. I would encourage any American who truly must possess one to immediately join one of our proud military services. They will be more than anxious and capable of training you in its planned use. You might even get to carry it on a deployment in defense of our great nation. Many before you have, and far too many died while in its possession.Bruce CastkaCanajoharieMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationCuomo calls for clarity on administering vaccineEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img