News Round Up
News Round Up

A bit of good news to start with: Tesco, the largest supermarket chain in the UK, is to ditch all shrink-wrap packaging on multi-packs of tinned food, which will get rid of 67 million pieces of plastic from products sold in their stores. It is all part of a pledge to make sure all their packaging is recyclable by 2025.

I guess they are living up to their slogan, “Every little helps”.

It’s not all good news for the environment though. In an Interesting Fact this week, we reported on how many plastic bottles Coca-Cola manufactures each year. Sadly it appears that they don’t intend to reduce this wasteful practice any time soon. According to the BBC, the company’s head of sustainability, Bea Perez told BBC News at the World Economic Forum in Davos that customers value the plastic bottles because they are lightweight and resealable, and argued that getting rid of them would hurt sales, saying, “Business won’t be in business if we don’t accommodate consumers.”

Well, this consumer only buys her soft drinks in glass bottles.

According to the Independent, the US Department of Transportation is cracking down on airline passengers taking emotional support animals on flights. The problem, as usual, is that some people have been abusing the system, seemingly you can buy a certificate for around £115 ($150), which the airline is obliged to accept, stating that you need emotional support when flying. As a result, airlines are reporting a number of behaviour-related service animal incidents on aircraft, including urinating, defecating, and biting. It seems passengers have turned up with some unusual species of animals, such as miniature ponies, peacocks, ducks, turkeys, pigs, iguanas, etc.

Delta Airlines currently bars animals that are “growling, biting, jumping on passengers, flight attendants or staff, relieving themselves in the gate area or cabin, barking excessively and eating off seat back tray tables”. They have also banned goats, frogs and salamanders.

If you think this is a bit far-fetched, think again.

If you are a football supporter, you might find the next story a bit worrying. According to a story in The Sun, the stress of supporting your favourite team is bad for your health, especially if they lose.

According to research carried out at the University of Oxford, fans of the losing side are at most risk, with high levels of the hormone cortisol, which can increase blood pressure and put increased strain on the heart. Previous research has also shown there have been more instances of heart attacks among fans on ‘important’ match days, so called match-day stress can also lead to strokes and acute coronary syndrome.

If you want to look a bit healthier, it appears that John Lewis, a major retailer in the UK, is the first high street retailer in the UK to offer a male beauty counter. The concession is being run by War Paint For Men, an independent male beauty brand that sells everything from anti-shine powder to foundation (but not lipstick).

In 2017, the male-grooming business was valued at £44.6 billion, but according to Research and Markets, this figure is set to surge to a potential £60.6 billion by 2023. 

A recent poll carried out by the UK Mushroom Bureau found that one in 20 Britons reckon potatoes grow on trees, and pineapples grow in the UK, while almost four-in-ten think apples are a tropical fruit that does not grow in the UK. In addition, 15% mistakenly thought that mushrooms grow underground, 11% thought green beans were root veggies, and 7% believed that parsnips grow on trees. Probably in the potato orchard.

In the newspaper report from the Daily Mail, a spokesperson from the Mushroom Bureau said, “This study highlights just how little many people know about where the food they routinely buy is from, revealing Brits know where less than a quarter of the food in their fridge comes from.”

And finally a warning for parents from the Daily Mail: The Robert Pockock pub in Gravesend – a Wetherspoon’s establishment – has brought in a two-drink limit for anyone bringing children into the pub. A poster said they were ‘protecting children from harm’, because parents were letting their children run around uncontrolled.

It is actually illegal to be drunk while in charge of a child under the age of seven, and before 1995 children under the age of 14 were not allowed in any pub in England and Wales. However, nowadays many pubs rely on the family market with a billion pub meals being served in the UK every year.