Environmental themes have dominated headlines over the weekend, with Amazon and Apple the target of an impressive eco-campaign led by rival retailers, and Indonesian officials swooping in to protect their controversial palm-oil market. Meanwhile, shoes made from pineapple waste are big in Kenya, and baked vegan goodies are being whipped up by a major chain on Britain’s high street.




Monday, 26 August 2019





Hello ,

Environmental themes have dominated headlines over the weekend, with Amazon and Apple the target of an impressive eco-campaign led by rival retailers, and Indonesian officials swooping in to protect their controversial palm-oil market. Meanwhile, shoes made from pineapple waste are big in Kenya, and baked vegan goodies are being whipped up by a major chain on Britain’s high street.




Europe


Obstacles ahead ▪ Germany’s postal service DHL will cease delivering fresh food for Amazon following an underwhelming market response. Meanwhile, the online behemoth has suffered another blow, with some of America’s top publishers suing its audio platform Audible for copyright infringement.



Plastic fantastic ▪ Leading UK grocer Tesco is ploughing ahead with the second phase of its plastic reduction plan and will begin assessing the quantity of product packaging and determining whether or not to stock it. Meanwhile, discounter Iceland has successfully recycled over one million plastic bottles in its ‘reverse vending machine’ trial.




United States


Changing tides ▪ Last week, Walmart and Tesla became embroiled in a litigation dispute, this week they are trying to work things out amicably. The lawsuit over faulty solar panels between the retail leader and the energy dynamo has been put on pause while they search for a solution outside of court.



Enticing ventures ▪ Target is well on track with its USD 7 billion building and renovation investment plan and is celebrating the opening of its 100th small-format store and its 500th store remodel since 2017. Meanwhile, financiers are hurrying to invest in vegan enterprise Impossible Foods before it goes public.




Asia & Australasia


Gearing up ▪ German supermarket majors Kaufland and Aldi are seriously upping their game as they attempt to disrupt the Australian grocery sector. The former is locking down building sites with vigour, while the latter is increasing its expansion plans. Watch out Woolies and Coles!



Ethical questions ▪ The Indian government is considering a ban on E-cigarettes with prison time for offenders, a move which seriously disrupts the plans of industry leaders Juul and Philip Morris. In Indonesia, some retailers have been told to remove products claiming to be palm oil-free, in a bid to safeguard the country’s main export.



Saga continues ▪ The tit-for-tat trade war between America and China continues with President Trump urging US companies to move away from Chinese operations, causing stocks to tumble. Meanwhile, China has cautioned that there will be consequences if the US doesn’t stop its ‘wrong actions’.




Weird and wonderful


Smelly idea ▪ In what sounds like the plot from a sci-fi film gone wrong, a Finnish advertising agency has begun harvesting bodily fluids from its employees to make…perfume. The scent is then offered to potential new recruits, and their reaction to the smell a sign of how they might fit in with the company.



Strong message ▪ Apple and Amazon have been delivered a staunch environmental message… from other multinational leaders. Over 30 big retailers took out an ad in the New York Times to encourage the global powerhouses to approach their business in a more ethical way.



Inspiring eco ▪ Green initiatives are inspiring today. An entrepreneurial group in Kenya has created a line of stylish footwear made from pineapple waste. In the UK, bakery chain Greggs is cashing in on the vegan phenomenon sweeping the globe, by creating indulgent vegan versions of its popular products.