Consumer watch

first_imgI used to go to Greggs every other day when I lived in Headingley, Leeds. There was a shop on my street so it was very convenient to buy bread, sandwiches or pasties. Occasionally I’d buy doughnuts there too. I also used to go to Ainsleys of Leeds a lot because there are so many shops dotted around the city centre.I went to Leeds University and I really liked Ainsleys bakeries because they did a lot of student promotions. It means a lot when you’re living off hardly any money!They also seemed to employ a lot of young people, which I think also entices students into to their shops.Now, however, I live in London and I only go to Greggs about once every two weeks. There seem to be a lot fewer Greggs stores than in Leeds. I hardly ever see them in the centre of London.I like Greggs’ tuna sandwiches with mayo, onions and there’s a nice one with peppers. I also really like the cheese and onion and chicken pasties. They’re quite filling, so I’ll usually pick one up when I’m out shopping or sometimes when I’m on my way back from work and can’t be bothered cooking.Now I live in London, I just tend to go to the supermarkets to buy everything all at once and I am becoming more aware of the latest health trends.I really enjoy brown bread made with lots of nuts and seeds. It tastes good and is better for me than white.Note to all bakers: I love crunchy flapjacks but now I barely ever see them!Natalie Bamber, 23, is a conference producerlast_img read more

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‘Crisis in Japan: The Way Forward’

first_imgLike grief, like aging, like rocket launches, a disaster unfolds in stages. The earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis that struck Japan March 11 may be entering another stage as the multiple effects ripple through the island nation’s economy, politics, and society.These ripples and the exact nature of the next stage in what is now being called 3/11 were discussed Wednesday (March 23) by a panel of Harvard Japanese analysts and Japanese officials, including Takeshi Hikihara, the consul general of Japan in Boston.Hikihara updated statistics that continue to worsen. As of March 22, there were 9,500 deaths, 16,000 people missing, 3,000 injured, and 260,000 evacuated. Low levels of radioactivity were seeping into produce and raw milk.But Hikihara emphasized areas of improvement. “Emergency supplies are beginning to reach suffering people,” he said. “I am happy to say [that] as of yesterday all the power was connected to each of the six [nuclear] power plants.”Only 12 days had passed since the initial earthquake, noted Susan Pharr, the Edwin O. Reischauer Professor of Japanese Politics. “We can start to think about some of the broader questions that all of this raises,” she said, “such as: What will it mean for the future of Japan? What will it mean for Japan’s leadership, including the Democratic Party of Japan, and [the] prime minister, and the future of Japanese democracy?”Institutional changes are inevitable and have already begun, the panelists said.“For the first time in Japanese history, Japanese military established a joint task force,” said Yoji Koda, a retired vice admiral of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and now a senior fellow in the Harvard University Asia Center. A single commander has taken charge of all three of Japan’s services that are providing rescue operations, he said.Japan’s economy may be overhauled, said Kotaro Tamura, a former elected official in the Japanese Diet and currently a research associate in the Program on U.S.-Japan Relations in the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.While the areas hit hardest by the disaster account for only 7 percent of Japan’s GDP, the rest of the country is suffering too, he said. Tokyo, for example, has lost 30 percent of its electricity, and people are not only conserving energy but are holding off on purchases. Toyota has slashed production; entertainment companies that have lost venues are declaring bankruptcy.Harmful rumors about radiation levels are playing a part. “People don’t shop, people don’t produce, people don’t go out,” Tamura said.  “We are losing purchasing power.”Citing the slogan “Disaster is a mother of reform,” Tamura outlined economic strategies that he believes should be considered. They include eliminating income taxes (as in Nevada, in which case gambling would have to be allowed); eliminating consumption taxes (as in New Hampshire); cutting corporate taxes; and creating favorable tax situations for the wealthy elderly to encourage them to stay.  He also urged the central government to give more discretionary power to local governments on taxation, regulation, and legislation.“Although the damage caused by this extreme event is much, much bigger than I can explain, Japan will come back with huge and extensive reforms that will be very good for the future,” Tamura said.Koda detailed the massive relief effort by the Japanese military and police and fire departments, showing slides of relief efforts amid scenes of devastation. “Since everything is gone, the only means to get to persons in the distressed area is by manpower,” he said.His voice cracked while describing small miracles: the baby found amid the rubble; the man found at sea on the roof of his house.  More than 19,000 people have been rescued. “There’s hope,” he said. He showed a slide of people patiently waiting for water with “no struggle, no fight,” a sign of the Japanese power of patience.Every possible measure is being taken to cool down the nuclear reactors damaged in the earthquake and tsunami, he said, describing progress as “two steps forward and 1.5 steps back.”“It’s clear we’re entering a new stage in how this disaster is evolving in Japan,” said Michael Reich, the Taro Takemi Professor of International Health Policy.In a disaster, Reich said, there is “the heroic stage of saving people, the stage where people are in shock, then moving into a stage of disillusionment as people get angry at what has happened to them, and a stage of reconstruction.”  Japan is now emerging from the first, emergency stage, he said.“A disaster is an opportunity to regain a sense of national purpose. But this is going to require some visionary leadership,” he said. “The question is who is it today in Japan who can do this?”To ensure that the historical record of the unfolding disaster is preserved, Andrew Gordon, the Lee and Juliet Folger Fund Professor of History, said Harvard has launched a digital archive project to preserve the Internet records of the event — such as Twitter feeds, web pages, and social media observations —  that might otherwise disappear.“We’re part of something that’s going to have an important impact for many years,” Gordon said. “We need to be attentive to preserving the record of what’s happening.”He requested that material be sent to [email protected] panel was sponsored by the Edwin O. Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies, the Program on U.S.- Japan Relations, the Asia Center, and the Takemi Program in International Health.last_img read more

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Froggatt takes up Abercrombie & Kent leadership role | News

first_imgOldereasyJet makes further capacity cuts as Covid-19 restrictions hit Europe Froggatt takes up Abercrombie & Kent leadership roleAbercrombie & Kent has appointed Martin Froggatt to the role of executive vice president, destination management and as a member of the global management board.He will take up the role on Monday, November 9th.- Advertisement – The job encompasses global leadership across Abercrombie & Kent’s destination management companies; of over 55 offices in more than 30 countries, and its luxury riverboat and lodges brand, Sanctuary Retreats.Froggatt joins the business with over 25 years’ experience in the travel industry with leading brands such as Walt Disney Attractions, TUI and Travelopia in both the UK and the USA. While at Travelopia, he managed the education, events and expeditions portfolios delivering record customer satisfaction scores, revenue growth and profitability. – Advertisement – “As a renowned travel industry executive with a strong people focus, it’s great to have him on our global leadership team who continue to innovate exceptional travel experiences for our clients.”center_img – Advertisement – Under his leadership, the expeditions portfolio that included Quark Expeditions and TCS World Travel became market leaders through an unwavering focus on delivering the best customer experience. He was also instrumental in the delivery of several mergers and acquisitions, including the sale of Travelopia into private equity.Michael Wale, chief executive, Abercrombie & Kent, commented: “During these incredibly challenging times for the industry, I’m delighted to have Martin join us. – Advertisement –last_img read more

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