Subway has reached an agreement with a master franchisee to open nearly 4,000 new sandwich shops across mainland China over the next 20 years, it said on Tuesday. International expansion is a key growth strategy for the privately owned US - based chain, which is in the midst of a turnaround plan that also relies on re-modelled restaurants, updated menus and a splashy marketing campaign, reports Reuters. While it seeks to expand overseas, the company has been closing thousands of US locations amid a host of problems including over-expansion and discounts that eroded franchisees' profits. Even so, Subway's global comparable sales rose 12.1% in the first quarter. Other companies are also beefing up their presence in China, including Starbucks, which plans to open 3,000 new stores there by 2025.
Upmarket UK retailer Waitrose & Partners has launched a new own-label coconut oil SKU, which is both organic and Fairtrade certified. The product is produced by the Sonmic Organic and Natural Farmers’ Association (SONFA), a small producer organisation based in Sri Lanka, reports ESMmagazine.com. The organisation prioritises organic farming and focuses on protecting the environment, Waitrose said, Fairtrade collaborates with coconut farmers to ensure they receive a fair price for their crops, and the Fairtrade producer networks offer farmers training on environmentally friendly pest control, biodiversity and sustainable agriculture. Tom Shiel, Waitrose buyer said, "We are proud to be the first supermarket to launch a 100% Fairtrade own-label coconut oil. Alongside great quality and taste, the product supports the Sri Lankan farmers who produce the coconut oil to invest in their farms, communities and protect their environment."
Poland's agriculture minister has received a draft regulation from the European Commission extending a ban on imports of some Ukrainian food products until 15 September, he said on Monday. The EU on 2 May set restrictions until 5 June on imports of Ukrainian wheat, maize, rapeseed and sunflower seed to ease the excess supply of the grains in Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. Those countries had complained that cheaper Ukrainian grain was making domestic production unprofitable and had asked the EU to extend the ban. "We have received from the EC a draft of a new regulation banning the import of four products to the five countries," Robert Telus wrote on Twitter. "The effective date provided for in the draft is 15 September this year."
Read More: Weekly Round-Up ... 30 May 2023