Top Stories Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The Simon Wiesenthal Center lists Zentai among its 10 most wanted for having “participated in manhunts, persecution, and murder of Jews in Budapest in 1944.”The decision “appears to ignore numerous legal precedents which in the past facilitated the prosecution of the leaders of the Third Reich and additional Nazi war criminals,” the center’s Israel director Efraim Zuroff said in a statement. “In practical terms, it signals a dismal conclusion to Australia’s totally unsuccessful efforts to bring to justice any of the numerous Nazi war criminals who found refuge in the country.”(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) CANBERRA, Australia (AP) – Australia’s highest court ruled Wednesday that a 90-year-old citizen cannot be extradited to Hungary to face accusations he tortured and killed a Jewish teenager during World War II.The High Court upheld a lower court’s decision that reasoned war crimes charges former Hungarian soldier Charles Zentai may face did not exist at the time of the slaying, a conclusion criticized by the Nazi-hunting Simon Wiesenthal Center. Comments Share Hungary says Zentai is suspected of beating the teen to death in Budapest in 1944 for failing to wear a star identifying him as a Jew. Zentai, who migrated to Australia in 1950 and later became a citizen, has denied the allegation and has been fighting extradition since 2005.Last year, the Federal Court found that because the offense of “war crime” was not on Hungary’s statute books when the teenager died in 1944, it was not an offense for which Zentai may be surrendered under Australia’s extradition treaty with Hungary.The government appealed, but on Wednesday, the High Court upheld the lower court’s decision. Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare confirmed in a statement that the ruling means Zentai cannot be extradited.Zentai’s son, Ernie Steiner, has argued that his father _ who has been free on bail _ is too ill to survive the trip to Hungary.Zentai told reporters in the western city of Perth that he was prepared to supply answers if Hungary sent investigators to Australia to question him.“I’ve been so stressed, in the last few days in particular. Now, I just don’t know how I feel,” Zentai said.Steiner said his father was innocent and was not even in Budapest when the teen died. 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Four benefits of having a wireless security system 3 international destinations to visit in 2019
5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Top Stories NOUAKCHOTT, Mauritania (AP) – U.S. Africa command head Gen. Carter Ham met with Mauritania’s president and an official says the two are discussing a possible military intervention, likely West African-led, in north Mali against al-Qaida-linked group members and their allies.Tuareg rebels helped overtake Mali’s north earlier this year after a coup in Mali’s capital. Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and Islamist allies later took over the territory. The official spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation. No further details were available.Mali’s interim government has asked for support to restructure its military. The European Union says it is considering requests to support West African-led military intervention.Mauritania in August said it will not intervene militarily in the north Africa region, but it has conducted several operations against AQIM bases in response to threats to the country’s interests.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories Comments Share 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day
BAA was also criticised by Virgin Atlantic and British Airways (BA) for not keeping the airlines informed on when they would be able to resume flights.”It was pretty galling on that Tuesday to hear from the Prime Minister on the media that the runway was reopening that afternoon,” Virgin Atlantic chief executive Steve Ridgway told MPs. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: V.V BA operations director Andrew Lord also weighed in.“At the end of the day, if the airport operators do not provide a service to us it is our customers that suffer and that is a situation that is not acceptable to us,” he said. British Airports Authority (BAA) admits it failed to manage London’s Heathrow Airport during December’s snowstorm that forced the cancellation of hundreds of flights. The Telegraph reported BAA chief executive Colin Matthews fronted British MPs last week, who demanded reasons why Heathrow was unable to cope with the extreme weather.Costs for the partial or total closure of Heathrow before Christmas last year cost BAA about £20 million, the MPs were told.“We should have had a plan which envisaged much more snow,” he said.“We certainly should have done better and will do better in the future.”
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T Virgin Australia’s (VA) decision to fly additional regional and interstate services has coincided with the release of the airline’s new major marketing campaign, dedicated to the customer experience.Virgin Australia will increase flights on popular corporate routes between Brisbane and key regional cities Emerald and Rockhampton and also between Brisbane and Newcastle in New South Wales.“Demand from the corporate and resources sectors for more flights for each of these key regional cities has been strong,” Virgin Australia Group executive alliances network and yield Merren McArthur said.“Not only are we providing more choice of flight times but we have adjusted schedules to provide better onward domestic and international connections beyond Brisbane,” Ms McArthur said.Additional services between Brisbane and Emerald will commence on 29 October 2012, while new flights will commence between Brisbane and Newcastle and also Brisbane and Rockhampton from 12 November 2012.Virgin Australia’s innovative new campaign includes a 60-second television commercial, featuring Virgin Australia employees and was filmed on the salt plains of Western Australia.“We have completely overhauled the customer experience, transforming the look and feel of travelling withVirgin Australia both in the air and on the ground,” VA chief customer officer Mark Hassell said. “We now have a brand new product that can compete with the best airlines in the world,” Mr Hassell said. Popular Australian director Daniel Askill was commissioned to direct the soundtrack for the campaign’s commercial which features vocals from Australian artist Megan Washington performing ‘S’Wonderful’.The new advertisement was seen by thousands as part of the AFL Grand Final broadcast last weekend, while one of VA’s new Airbus A330 aircraft made a fly-over before kick-off at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).You can check out the new clip from Virgin Australia’s YouTube page below.http://www.youtube.com/user/virginaustralia/virgin
Source = ETB News: L.B. Malaysia Airlines will introduce a third daily Sydney to Kuala Lumpur service as of 5 February 2014. The new daily service from Sydney Airport will be on Malaysia Airlines’ new Airbus A330-300 aircraft, complete with new interior, mood lighting, extra storage space, individual screens and lie flat business class seats. “This additional service on the Sydney to Kuala Lumpur route will increase capacity to the growing demand by adding an extra 207,000 seats a year,” Sydney Airport chief executive Kerrie Mather said. Malaysia Airlines has announced it will launch a third daily service between Sydney and Kuala Lumpur, to commence in February 2014. “We estimate the additional flights will deliver AU$124 million in inbound visitor expenditure to the NSW economy per year, providing a great boost to tourism and business.” From 21 November, Malaysia Airlines will increase its current double daily operations from Sydney to 18 flights per week with an additional four services per week and from 5 February 2014, the airline will increase to 21 flights per week with a triple daily service.
Wotif faces a yearly profit drop of 15.4 per cent to AUD $43.2 million, following greater competition with its rivals and some uncertainty over regulatory approval for its purchase by Expedia.The Australian company’s hotel room night bookings system for Australia and New Zealand declined by 9.4 per cent but its accommodation margins increased by 13.7 per cent because of increased hotel commission rates.Expedia is currently offering AUD $3.06 a share and a AUD $0.24 fully franked dividend via a Wotif scheme of arrangement.Wotif has previously struggled to compete against Booking.com and Expedia.The ACCC is expected to make a decision on 10 September and the NZ regulator will make a ruling on 10 October.Source = ETB News: Tom Neale
Air New Zealand launches Sustainability FrameworkAir New Zealand has today launched a new Sustainability Framework as part of its commitment to helping supercharge our nation’s success.Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon unveiled the framework along with several sustainability initiatives at an event for business leaders in Auckland this morning (NZ time).“We see the success of our business as being inextricably linked to the success of our country – Air New Zealand needs a strong and prosperous New Zealand and in turn, New Zealand needs a successful and thriving national airline,” says Mr Luxon.“Given the significance of this business to New Zealand we have signed ourselves up to a mission and purpose bigger than ourselves – that is to supercharge New Zealand’s success – socially, environmentally and economically.”The airline’s new Sustainability Framework sets out how it will contribute to supercharging New Zealand’s success. The economic, social, and environmental pillars of the framework are supported by six key focus areas – the airline’s people; the communities it operates within; carbon, nature and science; tourism and trade and enterprise.Mr Luxon says Air New Zealand recognises that to be successful in its sustainability journey the airline requires advice from global experts. It has formed a Sustainability Advisory Panel made up of New Zealand and international experts with specialist knowledge. They are:· Sir Jonathon Porritt, Co-Founder and Director, Forum for the Future (United Kingdom)· Dame Anne Salmond, New Zealand anthropologist, writer and distinguished professor of Maori Studies, University of Auckland (New Zealand)· Rob Fenwick CNZM, entrepreneur, director and conservationist (New Zealand)· Derek Handley, social entrepreneur, Founder of Aera Foundation (New Zealand)· Suzanne Hunt, Founder and President, HuntGreen LLC and biofuels expert (United States)· Brian Pearce, Chief Economist, International Air Transport Association (Switzerland)Mr Luxon and Air New Zealand’s Chief Flight Operations and Safety Officer, Captain David Morgan, who has responsibility for sustainability at the airline, also sit on the panel.Sir Jonathon Porritt emphasised how important it is to see a large New Zealand company take sustainability seriously, both for the company itself and for the New Zealand economy as a whole.“We’ve been able to convene a group of people with enormous expertise in different areas of the sustainability agenda. What excites us is the opportunity to support Air New Zealand in its goal of becoming one of the world’s most sustainable airlines.”Mr Luxon says the actions to be delivered under the sustainability framework have been driven in part by insights gleaned from its staff and customers.“Earlier this year we conducted a significant piece of research, asking how people thought Air New Zealand should ‘supercharge New Zealand’s success’. Key themes to emerge from the research were around enabling knowledge and inspiration as well as helping young Kiwis and emerging businesses to succeed. In the coming year we’ll be launching several significant initiatives that support these themes.”Source = Air New Zealand
Booking.com presents 5 Fun Food FestivalsBooking.com presents 5 Fun Food FestivalsMore than one in five global travellers said they have travelled especially to attend a food festival with more than half saying that they travel specifically for the thrill that comes with exploring global cuisines*. To celebrate the harvest this autumn, Booking.com, the global leader in connecting travellers with the widest choice of incredible places to stay, is presenting five beautiful destinations that are perfect for celebrating food, immersing yourself into a new culture and pleasing your palate with different and unique flavours.Zibelemärit (Onion Market) – Bern, SwitzerlandThe historical and picturesque city of Bern is nestled within the banks of the Aare River and is highly endorsed for its old town, sightseeing and history. Every year, on the fourth Monday of November, it hosts the traditional Onion Festival, where 50 tons of onions are sold and transformed into tasty delicacies.Where to stay: With a central, yet quiet location in the city centre, Bed and Breakfast Wildrose offers spacious rooms and complementary full English breakfast that guests can enjoy on the terrace during sunny days.Seafood Festival – O Grove, Spain Around two-thirds of the earth’s surface is covered by water – just think of all the delicious fish, succulent squid, and juicy shellfish out there! Every October, for the last 53 years, the picturesque coastal town of O Grove organizes the Seafood Festival. Travellers from all over the world have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of delicious local dishes with fresh seafood from Ría de Arousa in a destination highly rated for seafood, beaches and scenery.Where to stay: Offering a sun terrace and beautiful views of O Grove, Habitaciones Castelao is a great place to stay to enjoy all the activities of the festival. All rooms at the property have a flat screen TV, Wi-Fi, a coffee machine and a kettle.Castagnades (Chestnut) Festival – Meyras, FranceFor travellers looking for something less busy, in the heart of Ardéchois villages, the Castagnades festival invites guests of all ages to a friendly atmosphere with gastronomic competitions and local products made of chestnuts. Set in a valley between the Ardèche and Fontaulière rivers, the small village of Meyras, hosts the Chestnut Festival on 15 October. Meyras is highly endorsed by Booking.com travellers for tranquillity, nature and gourmet food.Where to stay: When it comes to places to stay, look no further than Maison Sous Le Pont B&B. This traditional stone house features a beautiful terrace among the trees, where guests can enjoy delicious local dishes made of fresh local products.Hawaii Food and Wine Festival – Hawaii, USA If you really want to savour Hawaii’s great cuisine, there’s no better way to taste it than durning the Hawaii Food & Wine Festival, which takes place from 20 October until 5 November on the Hawaiian islands of Maui, Oahu and Hawai’i . The festival hosts popular chefs, cooking demonstrations, delicious local dishes and various wine tastings to wash it all down. Booking.com travellers have endorsed the islands of Hawaii for their beaches, nature, tranquillity and the relaxation they offer.Where to stay: The Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas are luxury villas set between North Ka’anapali Beach and the mountains of West Maui, offering spacious villas with views of the ocean or island. The property has three onsite restaurants and two bars serving an array of cuisine from Italian to American.Mid-Autumn Festival – China The Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Mooncake Festival is the second most important festival in China and eating mooncakes is the most common activity of the day. Although this is technically not a food festival, it is a great opportunity to taste the delicious, sweet Chinese pastry.Where to stay: A world-renowned gem, sprawling Beijing is highly endorsed for history, culture and food and is a great destination to experience this unique festival. Positioned in the central hub of Beijing, the Rosewood Beijing is an artistic masterpiece of modern and old, featuring a lush garden, an outdoor pool and tastefully designed dining spaces.Source = Booking.com
Market Research Division of Ministry of Tourism compiles data on foreign and domestic tourist visits to States/Union Territories (UTs) received from Departments of Tourism of various State Governments and UT Administrations.Foreign Tourist Visits (FTVs) to States/ UTs during 2014, the number of foreign tourist visits (FTVs) to the States/ UTs was 22.57 million as compared to 19.95 million in 2013 and 18.26 million in 2012.The number of FTVs to States/UTs registered in 2014 a growth of 13.12% over 2013 as compared to a growth of 9.24% in 2013 over 2012.The top 10 States in terms of number of FTVs (in millions) during 2014 were Tamil Nadu (4.66), Maharashtra (4.39), Uttar Pradesh (2.91), Delhi (2.32), Rajasthan (1.53), West Bengal (1.38), Kerala (0.92), Bihar (0.83), Karnataka (0.56) and Haryana (0.55). The contribution was about 88.8% to the total number of FTVs in the country.The top 10 States in terms of FTVs in 2014 almost remained the same as those in 2013 except Goa which was at 10th position in 2013 got replaced by Haryana.Domestic Tourist Visits to States/ UTs during 2014, the number of domestic tourist visits to the States/ UTs was 1282 million as compared to 1145 million in 2013 and 1045 million in 2012.The number of domestic tourist visits to States/UTs registered in 2014 a growth of 11.93% over 2013 as compared to growth of 9.59% in 2013 over 2012.The top 10 States in terms of number of domestic tourist visits (in millions), in 2014, were Tamil Nadu (327.6), Uttar Pradesh (182.8), Karnataka (118.3), Maharashtra (94.1), Andhra Pradesh (93.3), Telengana (72.4), Madhya Pradesh (63.6), West Bengal (49.0) Jharkhand (33.4) and Rajasthan (33.1).The contribution of top 10 States was about 83.28% to the total number of domestic tourist visits during 2014. Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh have maintained the first and second rank respectively in terms of DTVs in 2014, whereas Karnataka and Maharashtra have come at 3rd and 4th position, respectively due to split of the state of Andhra Pradesh (dropped down to 5th rank) and Telengana (6th rank).Madhya Pradesh has slipped to rank 7th in 2014 from rank 6th in 2013 where as West Bengal has improved to rank 8th in 2014 from rank 9th in 2013. Jharkhand has entered into top 10 States improving its rank to 9th in 2014 from 14th in 2013.
Tamil Nadu has emerged as a critical market accounting for about 10% of the overall leisure business with a year-on-year growth of 23%. With leisure business expected to see a growth of 20-25% this year as a result of increasing outbound from tier II, III and IV Indian cities, Thomas Cook (India) suggested the growth is due to policy reforms over the years.Romil Pant, Senior Vice President – Leisure Travel, Thomas Cook (India) said, “This year, we’ll be focusing on strengthening our presences in tier II, III and IV cities by launching regional tours, which includes regional language speaking operator, co-travellers and regional cuisine. Since its launch in Tamil Nadu, we’ve received an encouraging success.”Highlighting the emerging trends that as visa procedures become easier, people are excited to explore the newer market. On the domestic front, he said the emerging trend was to combine religious travel with a domestic trip.
W Ibohal Singh, Director of Tourism, Government of Manipur stated in a press conference of HODs organised by DIPR for highlighting the activities and achievements of the Government of Manipur held at DIPR Complex, Moirangkhom, Imphal that the tourism department is giving its priority to promote eco-friendly and sustainable tourism in the state.He said that a good hospitality is must promote tourism in the state and the tourism department is doing its best to promote economic growth and provide sustainable livelihood to the people of the state.Manipur Sangai Festival was attended by 50,000 national and international delegates and exhibitors, Shirui Lily Festival, NorthEast Development Summit, International Polo tournaments and few others were organised by the tourism department. These festivals have helped Manipur receive about 158,000 domestic tourists and 3,600 foreign tourists in the last fiscal year.Singh also averred that the Government is putting in more efforts to conserve and preserve the Manipuri Pony in the state by developing an exclusive Pony Sanctuary at Heingang area.Infrastructure Development of Tourist Destination of Santhei Natural Park, Andro, Infrastructure Development of Tourist Resort at Sendra Hillock, development of Marjing Polo Complex at Heingang and development of Manipur Adventure and Allied Sports Institute Complex (MAASIC), Keirao which were inaugurated in the past one year are some of the major upcoming tourism projects, said Singh.
Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-04-23 Tory Barringer Share New,Former Nationstar VP Joins Stearns Lending “”Stearns Lending, Inc.””:http://www.stearns.com/, a nationwide mortgage lending institution encompassing retail, wholesale, and correspondent business channels, announced the appointment of Aaron Samples as VP of strategic development.[IMAGE]Samples comes to Stearns from Nationstar Mortgage Special Servicing, where he was responsible for the acquisition of mortgage servicing rights, subservicing residential loan portfolios, outsource portfolio refinance, REO financing, and outsource loan originations. While at Nationstar, he held numerous sales management positions for the company’s correspondent, outside sales, inside sales, and wholesale divisions. His latest position at the company was VP of business development.In addition, Samples has held management positions with RealManage, LLC and CTX Mortgage.””Aaron is a welcome addition to the Stearns leadership team. His extensive knowledge of lending strategies, credit quality, risk analysis, and mortgage servicing will be vital to Stearns as we pursue new opportunities for growth of our mortgage servicing portfolio,”” said Stearns Lending CEO Brian S. Hale. “”He also brings a proven track record of success in sourcing opportunities that will further the Company’s loan production capabilities across all three of our lending channels.””Stearns is very pleased to have Aaron Samples on our team as we continue to be the employer of choice for extraordinary talent,”” Hale added. April 23, 2013 572 Views in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing New,Carrington Mortgage Services Names New Branch Manager Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Carrington Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-11-19 Tory Barringer The lending division of “”Carrington Mortgage Services””:http://www.carringtonhomeloans.com/ (CMS), LLC appointed Kathy Pilgrim as branch manager of the company’s branch in Duluth, Georgia.[IMAGE][COLUMN_BREAK]Pilgrim brings with her nearly 15 years of experience in mortgage lending. She was most recently regional sales manager at Impac Mortgage, where she was responsible for managing her branch and recruiting across the Southeast. Before going into housing finance, she sold real estate in the Atlanta area.In her new role, Pilgrim will oversee her office as it focuses on continued growth and providing expanded product offerings to consumers in the Atlanta metro market.””With Kathy Pilgrim’s industry and local market knowledge, and her tenacity to meet the needs of borrowers in today’s dynamic housing market, she is well positioned to lead our Duluth, Georgia branch toward providing enhanced service to our customers in the Atlanta area,”” said Ray Brousseau, EVP of CMS’ Mortgage Lending Division. November 19, 2013 425 Views Share
September 22, 2014 663 Views in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, News, Secondary Market The ongoing legal battle between the U.S. government and Bank of America over the sale of soured loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before the financial meltdown continued last week as lawyers for the government argued against a motion to throw out a fraud verdict rendered against the bank.In a court filing made Thursday, attorneys for the Justice Department said BofA’s attempt to overturn last October’s fraud verdict—which resulted in a $1.3 billion civil penalty—”[defies] the evidence, the law, and common sense.”The department’s argument came as a response to a late August filing by lawyers representing the megabank, who then said the government failed to conclusively prove that BofA’s Countrywide unit misrepresented the quality of loans packaged and sold to the GSEs in the lead-up to the housing crash. In their own filing, BofA’s team said argued “the evidence unambiguously showed that the … loans sold to Fannie and Freddie were well within industry standards for loan quality, and thus Fannie and Freddie received exactly what they paid for.”The bulk of the case revolved around a program at Countrywide called the High Speed Swim Lane (HSSL, or Hustle), which critics say emphasized production speed and volume at the expense of loan quality. The program ended before BofA’s acquisition of Countrywide in 2008.Also charged in the case was former Countywide official Rebecca Mairone, who the government accused of pushing the Hustle program against evidence that the loans being made were low-quality. Mairone was also found guilty and was ordered to pay $1 million.That judgment has also been disputed, with Mairone’s attorney arguing “… there was insufficient evidence for the jury to conclude that Mairone knew of any HSSL loans that were sold to the GSEs as ‘investment quality’ despite being ineligible for sale.”An after-hours call to a BofA spokesperson was not answered, and a request for comment from Mairone’s attorney was not immediately returned. U.S., BofA Continue Fight in ‘Hustle’ Case Bank of America Countrywide Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Justice Department 2014-09-22 Tory Barringer Share
You might also be interested in “From the start, especially in certain countries like Spain and Germany, the increase in sales was somewhere between two to six times the original sales,” he said.”If you take away the hassle of cutting it yourself, you have a real seller on your hands. That is something that the machine made possible.”He said around 250 machines were now being used in roughly 20 countries at present, anticipating there would be a total of 500 machines in operation in 12 months’ time and more than 1,000 in two years.”It’s definitely something that’s exploding,” he said.The first sales have recently been made in the Chinese market, with the machines due to be delivered by the end of July. Van Keeken expected huge growth in that market as well.Dutch Food Technology recently opened a sales office in the U.S., where retailers including Whole Foods and Walmart have used Piñabars.Production of the machines is still based solely in the Netherlands but Van Keeken said the company was looking into expanding elsewhere.Van Keeken also said the company was not confined to just pineapples, and was looking at “different fresh experiences” for other foods.”We have some ideas now for our current machines, such as small ones…but we see a trend toward ‘fresh but fast’. It has to be convenient. So that’s something we want to pick up on,” he said.www.freshfruitportal.com Chinese fruit store caught falsely labeling dragon … U.S. Florida Tomato Exchange says newly proposed M … The developers of pioneering technology that customers can use to slice a pineapple of their choice and take it home in a plastic tub are expecting exponential growth over the next couple of years. Dutch Food Technology sales manager Michel van KeekenSpeaking to Fresh Fruit Portal at last week’s London Produce Show and Conference, Dutch Food Technology sales manager Michel van Keeken said the number of machines in operation around the world was set to quadruple by the end of 2020.Customers place a pineapple in the machine, which then picks it up, removes all the skin and the core, cuts it into slices and returns it to the customer in a plastic tub within a matter of seconds.The idea for the machine, named Piñabar, came about in 2013 years ago when the company was approached by a retailer that asked if they could develop such technology.Van Keeken said the company launched its first product in 2015 in Dutch and German supermarkets.”We have been picked up by retailers like Carrefour in Spain and Edeka in Germany, which introduced it inside of their franchises and we grew very fast…now we have machines in places including Scandinavia, Southern Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the U.S.”Edeka has an exclusivity agreement with Dutch Food Technology to use the machine in Germany, and a similar deal has been made with U.S. pineapple company Chestnut Hill Farms, which will sell fruit along with the machine to its clients.There have been huge increases in pineapple sales in stores that have installed a machine, he said. June 12 , 2018 U.S. and China near deal that could end U.S. tarif … Police uncover huge Italian ‘kiwigate’ scandal …
Hazel Technologies launches new USDA-funded produc … You might also be interested in June 13 , 2018 U.S.: First storm hits California, more heavy rain … A release from the Ukrainian government said inspectors would travel to the Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhzhya and Kherson regions to visit production, storage and packing installations, as well as to learn about phytosanitary procedures.“The purpose of the visit is to provide the analysis of the phytosanitary risk of Ukrainian cherries during export to the People’s Republic of China and to make a protocol of phytosanitary requirements,” said Volodymyr Lapa, head of the State Service of Ukraine for Food Safety and Consumer Protection.”This, in turn, will enable Ukrainian cherries to be exported to China in a safe way and in accordance with the phytosanitary requirements noted in the Protocol. Ukrainian fruits and berries are exported to more than 30 countries.”During the history of Ukrainian sweet cherry export no notification was received regarding non-compliance with phytosanitary measures.”Dmytro Kroshka, chairman of fruit producers’ association UKRSADPROM, said negotiations with China have been taking place with China for three years.”In fact, since the creation of the Association, the process of coordination of phytosanitary control procedures has been initiated. The Association actively contributed to maximizing the speed of this process. At the moment, we intend to start moving from the deadlock the issue of exporting Ukrainian cherries to China,” he said.www.freshfruitportal.com China: Unique formats being used to appeal to ‘sop … With the Chinese Government recently having given the go-ahead to imports of cherries from Uzbekistan to begin, a delegation has now begun work carrying out a pest risk assessment in Ukraine. A meeting this week between Ukrainian and Chinese officialsOn May 30, China’s General Administration of Customs (CACC) indicated that the export protocol for Uzbekistani cherries had been finalized and shipments could begin.The protocol was first signed between the two countries in July 2017.The Central Asian nation is one of the world’s largest sweet cherry-producing countries, with total volumes last year in excess of 100,000 metric tons (MT), according to USAID. Around a third of production is typically exported, with Russia the leading market.The country’s season runs from late April to early June, according to local media Azer News, which also reported that during a recent event at the Uzbekistani Embassy in China, Chinese companies agreed to purchase around 5,000MT of the fruit.With Uzbekistan now able to export to the market, a Chinese delegation this week arrived in Ukraine to begin carrying out a pest risk assessment for sweet cherries from the Eastern European country. Canada’s cherry industry suffers 50% drop in seaso …
July 10 , 2018 In this ‘in charts’ mini-series of articles, Colin Fain of data visualization tool Agronometrics illustrates how the U.S. market is evolving. In each series, he will look at a different fruit commodity, focusing on a different origin or topic in each installment to see what factors are driving change.Guatemala’s climate is one of the few in the world that allows for year-round production of blackberries. Most of their volume, however, is strategically produced to fill the gaps left by Mexico, and since 2010 one in four blackberries consumed by Americans between July and September has been from this Central American origin. US Blackberry Movements by Origin 2016 in Lbs(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics)Guatemala’s strategic position has allowed the origin to receive a premium against the prices of their northern neighbor – coming in at 5% higher historically and a significant 27% this year. This feat is impressive considering growing competition from U.S. origins and that fruit from Guatemala has further to travel than the Mexican competition.US Blackberry Shipping Point Prices (Flats 12×6 Oz Cups) in USD(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics)As Guatemala’s blackberry season is about to get underway, I was very curious to know what will be the effect of the devastating eruption of the aptly named Volcano of Fire, which took 113 lives and has left, as of yet, 332 missing.I was particularly concerned, knowing that much of the blackberry production is centered around Antigua, a beautiful colonial city and the capital of the region where the volcano is located. The volcano itself lying only 20km to the southwest of the city.US Blackberry Movements from Guatemala by Month in Lbs, Comparing the Last Four Years(Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics)To dive deeper into what we could expect from the region, I reached out to one of our clients, Planesa, who commercializes their produce in the U.S. under the label of PureFresh and is one of the country’s most successful blackberry exporters.Estuardo Robles, Pure Fresh’s director of business development, was able to shed some light on the situation on the ground. In the chart above we can see that June this year has reported one of the lowest volumes compared to previous years in the country’s history. Part of the problem was caused by transport bring interrupted. Even the airport airport shut down – a major issue since all blackberries from Guatemala and sent via airfreight, with Miami as their primary destination.With a large percentage of the company’s production covered by tunnels, Planesa’s productions teams are very grateful that most of their fruit was not affected by the fallout from the volcano, however, manpower had to be pulled to help clear the tunnels of ash that was blocking out the sun, which also had an effect on the volume exported in June.In a great victory for tunnel technology for blackberries, Planesa is expecting to overcome the largest volcano eruption Guatemala has experienced in the last 500 years. According to their current expectations, Guatemala’s exports should get back up normal levels in July, with Planesa’s own volume even surpassing what they sent last year. In our mini-series, we work to tell some of the stories that are moving the industry. Feel free to take a look a some of the other articles listed below.Avocados:Avocados in Charts: Dynamic growth and opportunities in the U.S. marketAvocados in Charts: California at the heart of the US marketAvocados in Charts: Peru – An opening window of opportunityBlueberries:Blueberries in Charts: Finding opportunities in the gapsStrawberries:Strawberries in Charts: The king of berries sees its biggest month everBlackberries:Blackberries in Charts: Strategic growth leads to more stable pricingAgronometrics is a data visualization tool built to help the industry make sense of the huge amounts of data that you depend on. We strive to help farmers, shippers, buyers, sellers, movers and shakers get an objective point of view on the markets to help them make informed strategic decisions. If you found the information and the charts from this article useful, feel free to visit us at www.agronometrics.com where you can easily recreate these same graphs, or explore the other 20 fruits we currently track, creating your own reports automatically updated with the latest data daily.www.freshfruitportal.comJune saw some of the lowest exports in years from the country, but Planesa expects them to return to normal in July. You might also be interested in Blackberries In Charts: California leads impressiv …
December 13 , 2018 USDA seeks comments on proposed Chinese citrus imp … South Africa: Maluma Symposium to draw larger inte … Blueberry uptick drives Camposol’s strong performa … South Africa: Citrus volumes could end up lighter … You might also be interested in Wild bees could be used to obtain larger and better blueberry yields, producing plumper, faster-ripening berries, according to new research by Vermont University.The study found that wild bees have significant benefits for berry farmers, including greater berry size, quantity, size consistency, and earlier harvests by two and a half days, the university said.“Other studies have explored bees’ effects on blueberry yields, but this is the first to show that pollinators can improve the quality of crops as well,” says Charles Nicholson, who led the study as a Ph.D. student.The research that involved nine berry farms showed that wild bees could boost production up to 36%, or roughly US$136,000 per year, on one mid-sized berry farm alone. On other farms, researchers determined wild bees’ potential benefits to production as roughly 6% on average.“This study highlights the undervalued work that wild bees do,” said Nicholson. “Without them, farmers need to find pollination somewhere else, by paying high rental fees to bring in honeybees, for example.”The team hand-pollinated blueberry plants in all nine research sites – using electric toothbrushes to mimic the buzz pollination of bumblebees – and then “painted” the collected pollen on over 5,000 blueberry flowers with small brushes.When comparing production on these flowers, one with artificial pollination, and one with natural pollination, they noted that the difference between the two conditions revealed each farm’s “pollination deficit” and the amount by which production could be improved with an increase in wild pollinators.“Many farmers don’t realize they can be limited by not enough pollinators just like they can be limited by water or nutrients,” said Nicholson.“This study shows, yet again, that protecting wild bee populations offers important benefits to our agricultural economy,” said co-author Taylor Ricketts, Director of UVM’s Gund Institute for Environment.“Maintaining healthy ecosystems can be as important as providing fertilizer or water.”The UVM team found that maintaining a high proportion of natural bee habitat around farms can help, as well as using fewer pesticides.
U.S.: California cherry season to arrive later tha … As a result of this spreading cherry production area – including greenhouse production – the cherry supply season has extended, these days beginning in early March and ending in late July.Dozens of cherry varieties are planted in China, but the most commercially cultivated varieties are European, such as Brooks, Bing, Rainier, Van, and Lapin, the USDA comments.Recently, Chinese farmers have been in the process of replacing some existing cherry varieties with varieties that better match current Chinese consumer demand.Cherry consumption, fruit prices on the riseThe current high fruit prices have also pushed up cherry prices this year, says the USDA.These price jumps have occurred despite increased production and smaller fruit size.For example, in Shandong’s Yantai region, the farm gate price for Meizao (Bing) cherries was 40-50 RMB (US$5.8 – US$7.2) per kilo, an increase of 20% from the previous year. Similarly, early March saw prices for greenhouse cherries in Yantai up 140-160 RMB (US$20.30 – US$23.20) per kilo.With increased production and an extended supply season, Chinese cherry consumption also continues to increase.Due to the fast-growing demand for cherries, online e-commerce retailers are working with suppliers to combine enhanced marketing with improved logistics.Thus far, this combination has resulted in faster growth in third and fourth-tier cities. This fast-growing demand represents strong potential for imported cherries, according to industry sources. China is expected to see greater cherry imports in 2019-20 as well as as a sharp increase in domestic production, according to a USDA GAIN Report.It also predicts the U.S. will remain the country’s largest cherry supplier during the summer, though its share will likely decline after, given the retaliatory tariffs.As for domestic supply, the Chinese industry is expected to see a 23% rise year-on-year to 420,000 metric tons (MT) this coming season. This rise is due to an increased number of bearing trees in producing regions.Along with the increased number of trees, weather patterns in most production areas have been favorable, contributing to the rise, notes the department.These growing conditions are a welcome change for growers from last season when a severe frost hit northern China during the cherry blossoming season, causing that year’s production to decline dramatically.Improved fruit quality, expanded hectarageThe overall cherry quality is acceptable this year, with the USDA pointing out that China’s cherry quality is improving thanks to enhanced crop management.Still, however, it says there is much room for improvement compared to imported cherries. For example, pre-cooling and post-harvest treatment is generally non-existent and grading is normally done by hand.Meanwhile, China’s cherry acreage is estimated at 150,000 hectares in 201920, up 7% year-on-year. This is part of the greater trend of cherry planted area expanding quickly in recent years given favorable market returns.In addition to traditional production regions such as Yantai (Shandong) and Dalian (Liaoning), Tongchuan (Shaanxi) and Tianshui (Gansu) have become major cherry producers in western China. Another round of heat coming to western U.S. … Experts analyze biggest challenges facing Chile at … You might also be interested in July 18 , 2019 Chile edges closer to Vietnamese market access for …
U.S.: FPAA pushes for new tomato deal with Mexico, … Mexico: Berry association says industry not affect … South Africa: Citrus industry hopeful for resoluti … July 31 , 2019 Meanwhile, one farm, DeLine Farm Partnership, of Charleston, Missouri, has so far received US$2.8 million in MFP payments.The top 1% of MFP recipients received, on average, US$183,331. The bottom 80% received, on average, less than US$5,000.MFP payments continue to leave out minority farmers, notes AgMag.Payment policy loopholes for wealthy farmersUntil now, MFP payments have been linked to crop production, favoring the largest producers of certain crops, reports the publication.The USDA initially said it would place a US$125,000 cap on MFP payments; however, the department chose to apply rules that allow relatives who do not contribute meaningful work on the farm to receive farm payments.According to the publication, the policy change allows many farm businesses to evade the cap.Changes to the second round of MFP payments, announced last week by Agriculture Secretary Sonny Purdue, will further favor the largest farmers by linking payments to the number of acres, not the number of bushels or bales produced. A new report has found that U.S. President Trump’s initiative to provide aid for growers suffering the impacts of the trade war is supporting one group overwhelmingly – weather farmers. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), the program has disproportionately helped rich landowners.Moreover, Donald Carr, a senior advisor for EWG, argues that the Market Facilitation Program (MFP) – through which most of the grower payments were made – has deepened the disadvantages of black and minority farmers.EWG yesterday released updated data on payments made through the first two rounds of the relief money dole out.MFP payments: A breakdownThrough April, total MFP payments for 2018-19 were US$8.4 billion. This data was obtained from the USDA through a Freedom of Information Act request.EWG’s analysis of the data found that the top one-tenth of recipients received 54% of all MFP payments.Specifically, 82 farmers have so far received more than US$500,000 in payments. You might also be interested in U.S.: Autumn Glory apples gain ground in February …