World Cup mascot fails to cash in with FIFA
30 June 2014
By STEPHEN WADE
A young girl waits with the mascot 'Fuleco' for the start of the group G World Cup soccer match between Portugal and Ghana at the Estadio Nacional in Brasilia, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- FIFA could not reach a financial agreement with a wildlife conservation group trying to save an endangered species of armadillo chosen as the World Cup mascot, the football governing body's head of corporate and social responsibility said Monday.
"Unfortunately, despite our intention ... there was no interest from the other side in collaborating with us," Federico Addiechi said, pinning the blame on the Caatinga Association. Addiechi said FIFA received "hundreds of requests" from non-government organizations like the Caatinga group and it was impossible to meet all of them. "Despite being a wealthy organization and the World Cup generating many resources - financial resources - the resources are not unlimited," Addiechi said. "We have to make decisions in order how to best invest our resources."
Council leaders: shoppers 'misled' over level of fat, sugar and salt in food
Saturday 21 June 2014
Council leaders want European officials to strengthen rules governing claims on health and nutrition in health products. Photograph: Bloomberg via Getty Images
Shoppers who are trying to buy healthy food products are "unwittingly" buying food that has high levels of fat, sugar or salt, council leaders have warned.
There should be a ban on the promotion of foods which purport to be healthy but which actually contain high levels of sugar, fat and salt, the Local Government Association (LGA) said. The European commission is being urged by the LGA to prohibit the "misleading" marketing of food products.
Council leaders, who were given the responsibly for public health under the government's health reforms, want European officials to strengthen the rules governing claims on health and nutrition in health products. The LGA said that there should be a pre-set level of the maximum amount of sugar, fat, salt and other nutrients allowed in products that make nutrition and health claims.
An LGA spokesman said that under current EU rules food companies are allowed to make claims about their products that are accepted as clear, accurate and substantiated, but the claims can be made regardless of the overall nutritional quality. For instance, products labelled as "low fat" may have high sugar or salt content. "Our concern is shoppers, who are trying to do the right thing and buy healthier options, are not being given the full picture," said Katie Hall, chairwoman of the LGA's community wellbeing board. "They are therefore unwittingly buying unhealthy products. In our view, this is wholly wrong and needs to be changed.
Novartis exec 'orchestrated swine-flu fraud'
20 June 2014
Siena, Italy (ANSA) - Prosecutors in Siena in charge of a suspected fraud case at Swiss multinational Novartis believe that its vaccine division swindled the Italian health ministry out of 2.7 million euros in 2012 by inflating the price of a component of its H1N1 swine flu vaccine.
The health ministry ordered the suspension of vaccine supplies in 2010 after the swine flu emergency abated. A vaccination campaign to immunize up to 40% of Italy's 60 million people began in November 2009 after Italy reported six deaths related to swine flu over the previous months.
The CEO of Novartis's vaccine division, Francesco Gulli, is under investigation and two Italian plants of the Swiss multinational were searched Friday. Prosecutors have also accused the multinational's division Novartis Vaccines Diagnostics of failing to adopt precautions to prevent the suspected fraud.
The probe is connected to another investigation in Siena over a suspected tax fraud at the company. Friday's was not the first Italian probe to hit the Swiss pharmaceutical giant.
Earlier this month finance police searched the offices of the Italian Medicines Agency (Aifa), the authority responsible for drug regulation in the country, as part of a criminal probe into Swiss pharmaceutical companies Roche and Novartis for alleged market manipulation and fraud.
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