Email Print NewsCan the organics survive the current economy?By admin – April 10, 2009 722 Twitter Linkedin WhatsApp Advertisement IT’s the dreaded and now, quite annoying, “R” word, but it has hit everything in its wake. Probably because we have let it. Food, is no different and as we get cuter with our purchases, some will let the luxury of good sound choices slip them by as they aim to make their money go further. Top of the list for the chop would be your free range meats and most likely your organic produce. Some producers may differ and others will agree, but figures released recently can indicate a slight decline in organic sales.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up In Ireland, the decline is apparent but not fully quantified, but in the UK, sales of organic products present a mixed picture, according to a major report published by the Soil Association.Organic food sales have been hit across all sectors, as consumers tighten their belts in the face of the economic downturn. 2008 saw sales in both regions marginally rise by close on two per cent, but this statistic must be seen in the context of overall food price rises rather than sales volume increases.Industry analysts have said that this has been a really difficult period for all retail, and organic sales have suffered along with the rest of the economy. Reports of this nature describe a very mixed picture as consumers react to the financial crisis. But those consumers who are committed to organic products appear to be staying loyal. This shows the underlying resilience of the organic market, which it is believed will grow again once the economy picks up.Figures would suggest that the organic participants have their fan base and those that choose it as a way of life, but it also shows that the increase in conversion is not that forthcoming as people still adopt a “wait and see attitude”.Th UK based organic body, the Soil Association, issued a report recently and it shows there has been a sharp fall in sales of certain products, including fruit, bread and bakery products, soft drinks and prepared foodstuffs, although even in these sectors, some brands are bucking the recessionary trend. In tandem there has been dynamic growth in sales of organic food through farmers’ markets where figures increased an estimated 19 per cent.Tesco is still the market leader in terms of value despite a fall in organic sales of 9.9% in 2008. Other smaller areas of organic production such as textiles and health and beauty products have also experienced very significant growth.Organic shoppers, like all consumers, have been buying fewer premium products and prepared foods, and switching to lower-cost retailers. There is also a focus on cutting waste and cooking from scratch – sales of organic home cooking ingredients increased by a remarkable 13.5% in 2008, while sales of organic prepared foods dropped sharply.Core consumers who may be cutting back are still determined to stick to their organic principles. Over one third of committed organic consumers say they expect to spend more on organic food in 2009, and only 15% expect to spend less. Animal welfare issues attracted a high public profile in 2008 and sales of organic milk, cheese, some meat and poultry grow by 10.6%, 11.5%, 13.3% and 17.7% respectively, demonstrating that where the benefits of organic production are understood commitment remains firm among ethical consumers.Research shows that over a quarter of consumers who do not currently buy organic food “would like to know more about organic products than they do” suggesting potential to broaden the market still further in the future.Whilst volatility in the organic market looks set to remain in 2009, environmental and political challenges to our current food and farming systems will demand that we develop sustainable production methods in the future. Governments have agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050. Such cuts can only be achieved in agriculture by deriving fertility from sunshine and organic matter – as organic farmers do – rather than from fossil fuel-based chemical fertilisers. That is a core belief of the organic way and one that they encourage leaders to exploreOrganic farms like all business face uncertainty and volatility. But there are still significant opportunities in some areas – fruit and arable for instance and in developing genuinely local and regional supply networks. Collaboration will also be key to the success of many farm businesses. Facebook Previous articleThe Expert Comment – Paul NestorNext articleOne giant step into Limerick city admin
The IHSAA is continuing to cut down on major high school sports programs in Indiana from recruiting. What does this mean to the average person who follows high school sports? Off-season coaches (mainly in basketball) who coach the junior high age level athlete in AAU or similar leagues cannot influence where these athletes attend high school. What happens is these coaches are assistants at the high school level, and the athlete follows them to that school. If they do so, they cannot participate until their sophomore year. This, of course, does not affect an athlete who goes to his/her district school. It applies only to those who want to go out of their district. There is reportedly a school in Indiana who had 6 of these AAU coaches sitting on the bench during the last season. That is what we mean by recruiting athletes.These rules also affect summer camps in such sports as tennis, golf, etc. Kids that attend these camps can only go to their district school without losing eligibility. They cannot follow the camp director to his/her school outside the district. When Indiana developed open enrollment, they also saw coaches who tried to bend the rules for their benefit. If this is confusing you, think of what the IHSAA is putting up with on a regular basis.
Wins for Reliance Hustlers, Cotton Field Strikers and Affiance F.CTHE sixth round of the Central Essequibo T20 league was played on Sunday last with host Reliance Hustlers imposing a convincing 8-wicket win over Queenstown S.C.After winning the toss and batting, the visitors posted 153 all-out in 19 overs, with former National Under -19 opening batsman, Herell Green striking 38 (5x4s), Jonathan Sankar 26 (3x4s) and Herry Green 22 (4x4s). Consistent bowling by the host saw 2 wickets each for Narendra Mandolall (2-14 off 4 overs), Pavindra Persaud 2-19 (4) and Anthony Ifill 2-23 (4).The Hustlers then wasted little time in reaching the target of 158-2 from just 13 overs with the in-form Mark Austin blasting an unbeaten 85, decorated with 14x4s and 3x6s, while Mandolall was also unbeaten at the end on 33 (5x4s). At the same venue, Cotton Field Strikers earned a 20-run victory against Ramkissoon’s XI after taking first strike to be all-out for 151 in the 20th over.Opening batsman Parmanand Persaud was in sublime touch with a colourful 55 (8x4s) being the principal scorer. Veteran off-spinner Naitram had impressive figures of 7-10 from his 4 overs. In reply, Ramkissoon’s XI, despite an entertaining 43 (6x4s and 1x6s) from Fenton Benneth, were restricted to 131-9 when their overs expired, to concede defeat.At the Affiance Number 1 ground, host Affiance S.C held their composure to clinch a 4-run win against Ravens. Batting first, Affiance S.C got off to a decent start with a half-century opening stand. Wickets then fell regularly after the breakthrough as Ravens struck back.Opener Sanjay Rajkumar played superbly for 60 (10x4s and 2x6s) to carry Affiance S.C to 153 all-out in the 20th over. Left-arm seamer Alvin Bacchus grabbed 3-14 from 4 overs while Jermain Anderson had 3-31 from his 4 overs. In reply, Ravens lost early wickets in their pursuit of the target.Not daunted by the situation, Jamal Wilson kept them in the hunt with an aggressive half-century. He belted 5x6s and 3x4s in a cameo 58.However, when he departed, Affiance S.C regained the balance and kept the pressure on the remaining batsmen. Despite a late flourish from former Essequibo senior inter-county batsman , Elroy Stephney 32 (4x4s and 2x6s) and a 6 from the final delivery, Ravens couldn’t cross the line, ending on 159-8 from the allotted 20 overs.Meanwhile, the competition will continue this week-end with the following fixture: Reliance vs Rebels XI, Bacchus Bulls vs Ramkissoon XI, Affiance S.C vs Reliance Hustlers and Queenstown vs Ravens. (Elroy Stephney).
The SunFest 2020 music and art festival along the West Palm Beach Waterfront April 30 – May 3, 2020. There are three stages that will host almost 50 bands over the four day event.The national headliners scheduled to perform on the Ford, Tire Kingdom and Airtab stages include:Cage The ElephantDarius RuckerIlleniumSlightly StoopidA Boogie Wit Da HoodieAdam LambertAJRJJ Grey & MofroJuanesKevin Gates+Live+Melissa EtheridgeNellyNe-YoThe RevivalistsSean PaulTower Of PowerscarypoolpartyAngie RoseBailey BryanThe BonfyreBrandon “Taz” NiederauerBre KennedyChildish MajorColony HouseJazz CartierJo Mersa MarleyLarry FleetMaggie KoernerMagnolia BoulevardThe Main SqueezeRic WilsonSouthern AvenueWilliam BlackPeter DoneganLeo Aether“It’s exciting when we get to announce the line-up and bring attention to the upcoming festival,” SunFest Executive Director Paul Jamieson told WPTV. “We aim to present national and local artists who appeal across generations and musical tastes. SunFest has become a very unique time of year that brings people from all walks of life and of all ages together in a perfect setting. That, as much as music, is what makes SunFest so special. For many people SunFest is more than an event, it’s a state of mind.”Buy your tickets before Friday, Feb. 28 to get the deepest discount. A four-day pass is 483, a two-day pass is $65, and a one-day pass is $40.