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Monday, February 25, 2013

Horse DNA found

NESTLE, the world's biggest food company, has removed beef pasta meals from shelves in Italy and Spain after tests revealed traces of horse DNA. The Swiss-based firm has halted deliveries of products containing meat from a German supplier. Nestle withdrew two chilled pasta products, Buitoni Beef Ravioli and Beef Tortellini, in Italy and Spain. Lasagnes a la Bolognaise Gourmandes, a frozen product for catering businesses produced in France, will also be withdrawn. A spokesman for the company told the BBC that Nestle had identified a problem with a supplier from Germany.

Tyre-maker profits

SHARES of Bridgestone, the world's biggest tyre-maker, have surged after it reported a 67 per cent jump in net profit. Its shares were up 8 per cent to 2751 yen ($F52) in early trade on Tokyo Stock Exchange. This week, Bridgestone reported a net profit of 171.6billion yen ($F3.24b) in the year to December 31, 2012, compared with 103b yen ($F1.94b) a year earlier. Its profits have been helped in part by the production boost at Japan's leading carmakers as they continue to recover from the 2011 natural disasters. At the same time a recovery in demand from the US car market has also helped boost sales of Japanese carmakers, driving up demand for car parts.

Gradual pick-up

GERMANY will avoid recession and return to growth in the first quarter of 2013, the country's central bank has said. The Bundesbank's monthly report for February forecast that the rest of 2013 will see a gradual pick-up in activity in Europe's biggest economy. If the economy shrank again in the current quarter, Germany would technically be in recession, defined as two quarters of contraction. The economy shrank by 0.6 per cent in the last three months of 2012.

Airline strike

WORKERS at the Spanish airline Iberia have begun a five-day strike in protest at planned cuts to jobs and salaries. Iberia has cancelled more than 400 flights out of 1000 scheduled for this week, with cabin crew and baggage handlers staging the walk-out. A lack of services at Spanish airports is expected to affect more than 1000 flights from various airlines. Iberia has announced plans to cut 3807 jobs after it reported mounting losses last year. In the first nine month of 2012 it lost 262million euros ($F619.8m).

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