Can the organics survive the current economy?

first_imgEmail Print NewsCan the organics survive the current economy?By admin – April 10, 2009 722 Twitter Linkedin WhatsAppcenter_img 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 adminlast_img read more

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Mothers, daughters participate in discovery-oriented retreat

first_imgSaint Mary’s hosted a mother-daughter retreat, which allowed ten mother and daughter pairs to spend time together while discussing their relationship and vocations, over the weekend. The students were from all around the country and ranged from sophomores to seniors in high school.Professor of communications Susan Baxter said she planned the event because she would have wanted something like it when her daughter was preparing to leave home for college.“I thought, the one thing I would have loved to have done with my daughter before she went to college was get some time with her one on one, to talk about what interested her and her life trajectory,” Baxter said.Baxter said she and her colleagues had been working with undecided students before the conception of the mother-daughter retreat. “The term undecided has connotations of ‘aimless,’ which is not what undecided students are,” she said. “They’re exploring. What we thought was, wouldn’t it be cool to get mothers and daughters together for a weekend in a setting where the daughters could watch how their mothers’ vocations are still developing? Vocation isn’t a destination. It’s a journey.” Baxter said she planned the time around December’s annual Madrigal dinners. “We thought [the Madrigal dinners are] one of the most beautiful things Saint Mary’s does, and it would be so great to have [the retreat] the first Sunday of Advent when [the Madrigal dinners are], so mothers and daughters could … stop and take a second before things get crazy with the holidays,” she said. Baxter said the event began Friday with an event called “Pizza with the Provost,” which included ice breakers, an introduction to the idea of vocation and a visit from President Jan Cervelli. Saturday featured a discussion on talents with director of Career Crossings Stacie Jeffirs and Carrie Lonier, a 1978 alumna who is now the director of the career center at the Art Institute of Chicago. Baxter said professor of music Nancy Menk and Madrigal singers talked to mothers and daughters over lunch. On Saturday, several professors held panels to discuss their vocations with the mothers and daughters, Baxter said. Professor of social work Frances Kominkiewicz said in an email she had many mentors in her life who encouraged her vocation, so she wanted to do the same at the retreat.“I was so fortunate to have many mentors in my life who guided me to find my passion and then helped me to connect that passion to a career path,” she said. “I learned to listen with a ‘third ear’ to their words of wisdom, and to take chances and seize opportunities.  I hope to assist students to find the passion that drives them, that makes them the most enthusiastic about life and that makes them the happiest.  Building that bridge that connects them in fulfilling their passion through a career and their other life activities is my wish for them.”Baxter said concurrent sessions, dealing with topics such as growing up and maintaining a healthy mother-daughter relationship, were held on Sunday.  “We had concurrent sessions, one for the daughters to study with Jessica Kimmet from Campus Ministry called ‘Emerging from the Cocoon,’ about how you’re going from being a young girl to an adult, and one for the moms, where [associate professor of psychology] Karen Chambers took them through from ‘Mother to Mentor,’” she said.Kimmet said in an email she decided to become involved in the retreat because helping high-schoolers develop a mindset for learning will aid in their their growth and development.“I was excited to spend some time with these visiting young women because, like many of the educators at Saint Mary’s, I feel that the groundwork laid in high school is such an important part of one’s ongoing journey of growth and lifelong learning,” she said. “I was able to work with the daughters on some practices to help them continue their learning mindset beyond their years in school, and really enjoyed talking with them about how to keep cultivating their hearts and minds.”Baxter said participants also visited a presentation by Iris Giamo, director of the disabilities resource office, about living with learning disabilities. “Iris Giamo did a session called ‘Learning Disabilities’ about how weaknesses become strengths, and how a person can view their learning disability as something terrific,” she said. Baxter said the retreat was not meant to be a recruitment event for Saint Mary’s. “The weekend was not to sell Saint Mary’s — it was just to explore vocation, no matter where they want to go, because they’re not really thinking about that yet, and they shouldn’t feel obligated to,” she said.  Baxter said the purpose of the retreat was to encourage mother-daughter bonding, because mothers and daughters have a special kind of love. “The mother-daughter relationship gets a bad [reputation]” she said. “We all know that we fight with our moms, and that we all have issues, but when my mother died in 2010, I realized no one is going to love me in the exact same way as that woman did … and I think it’s really important for mothers and daughters to make that connection.”Tags: Campus Ministry, daughters, Disabilities Resource Office, Iris Giamo, mentor, mother-daughter retreat, mothers, retreat, Vocationlast_img read more

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Former South Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg to join Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study

first_imgFormer South Bend mayor and presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg will serve as a faculty fellow at the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study (NDIAS) for the 2020-2021 school year, according to a Thursday press release.As an NDIAS fellow, Buttigieg will work on two research projects, “one that explores how to restore trust in political institutions and another that considers the forces distinctively shaping the 2020s.” In addition, Buttigieg will teach an undergraduate course and host seminars and other academic programming in conjunction with other NDIAS fellows and students.“I’m thrilled to welcome Pete to the institute and Notre Dame in the coming year. More than ever, we need scholars and public leaders working together, generating the insights that will make democratic institutions stronger and advance the common good in creative and evidence-based ways,” said Meghan Sullivan, director of the NDIAS and the John A. O’Brien Professor of Philosophy.Buttigieg — a lifelong resident of South Bend — has been connected with the University since his parents were both long-standing members of the faculty.This University has previously had political figures serve as fellows or guest lecturers, including former White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Paul Ryan.Tags: faculty fellow, Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study, Pete Butigeglast_img read more

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No Extension In Media Accreditation Deadline

first_imgJournalists hoping to be a part of the Asaba 2018 African Senior Athletics Championships and are yet to apply for the media accreditation have been advised to do so without further hesitation.In a statement issued by Olukayode Thomas, the Head of Media and Publicity for the Asaba 2018 championship, he reiterated that there will be no extension to the June 30 deadline date announced when the accreditation process officially opened nearly two months ago.According to Thomas, the Local Organsing Committee are working round the clock to ensure that all accredited journalists are provided with an enabling environment to make them carry out their duties out without any form of stress. He said: “Actually, the response by journalists across the continent and beyond have been impressive but you know some people just like doing last minute rush.“We are going to be firm on the June 30 deadline we have announced from the start. So, we enjoin all interested journalists to go to the website and complete the simple application process”The accreditation process can be easily done by visiting http://caaasaba2018.com.ng/ media-accreditation/ to fill the form online.Interested journalists are expected to fill out one registration form for each member of their team; as a group or team application will not be accepted.Already, it has been stated that Non-Rights Holders will only be allowed to bring cameras and/or recording equipment onto the event site for the purpose of carrying out non-live reports.There will be no access with this camera to the stands or any location with view to the live action.Also, the deadline for booking accommodation in the official media hotels is June 30, 2018, while for Media Friends outside Nigeria, the accreditation will serve as their visa.The Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba, Delta State, will host the Asaba 2018 African Senior Athletics Championships from August 1-5Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

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Mourinho to leave Real Madrid after conflict with president

first_imgPortuguese coach Jose Mourinho will part with Real Madrid after the end of the current season due to bad relations with club’s President Florentino Perez.According to Spanish Marca newspaper, Real’s administration has reached an agreement with Mourinho that he’ll depart on June 30, 2013.Perez believes the coach has reached the top of his potential at Madrid and has nothing more to offer the club.Mourinho is also reported to be unhappy with some of the decisions made by Real’s president.Real currently sit third in the Spanish La Liga, 11 points behind table toppers Barcelona.Mourinho has been with the Madrid side since 2010, with the 49-year-old leading the Whites to a Spanish title victory and the home cup.last_img read more

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