Wine prices set to rise after poor grape harvest, warns Majestic boss

Majestic Wine boss Steve Lewis says supermarkets are likely to increase the price of a £5 bottle by 50p or £1 next spring Wine lovers are facing a worse than usual new year hangover as poor harvests in some of the world’s most important wine producing regions threaten price hikes of up to £1 a […]


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Huawei acts to clear its name

Chinese telecoms firm classified as cyber-security risk by US and Australia promises to ‘dispel myths and misinformation’ The Chinese telecoms equipment firm Huawei, classified by several governments as a national security risk, has done a poor job of communicating about itself and in trying to dispel myths, the chairman of its Australian business has admitted. […]


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British beer-makers fight back against fashion for foreign hops

Brewers at festival to raise profile of UK hops say traditional crop and techniques could be usurped by trend for stronger imports It is the quintessential English crop, synonymous with the Kent countryside and a key ingredient used to give beer its flavour. But there are fears that traditional British hop farming could die out […]


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Drivers should spend a year as learners, insurers say

Association of British Insurers calls for an overhaul of licensing to reduce ‘tragic waste’ of young lives on the roads Novice drivers should be subject to restrictions on night time driving and a reduced drink driving limit, according to the Association of British Insurers. It also recommended learners spend at least a year displaying their […]


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Civil service shakeup: Francis Maude looks abroad for inspiration

Cabinet Office minister to commission research into how foreign governments employ civil servants as he plans reform In a fresh sign of the coalition’s frustration at the civil service, the Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude will announce today that he is commissioning research into how foreign governments make civil servants personally contractually accountable to deliver […]


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Latest release of ‘X-files’ show MoD took threat of alien visitors seriously

Most intelligence officers were deeply sceptical about UFOs, but saw the need to cover their backs Britain’s defence intelligence agency considered the possibility of alien craft visiting Earth and asked “UFO desk officers” to monitor any potential threat from outer space, hitherto top secret documents released on Thursday show. Thousands of pages of highly classified […]


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Global music sales dip 3% as industry vows to continue anti-piracy fight

• CD sales fall 9%, but European growth helps digital rise by 8%• Sopa and Pipa protests were ‘hysterical’, says industry Global music revenues last year fell by the smallest amount since 2004, as industry executives warned that the “hysterical” reaction to the proposed Sopa and Pipa laws in the US will not derail their […]


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Children’s clothing retailer Pumpkin Patch goes into administration

Sixty members of staff have already been made redundant and five of the company’s 36 stores have closed The children’s clothing chain Pumpkin Patch has become the latest high-street retailer to fall into administration, putting 400 jobs at risk. Sixty members of staff have already been made redundant, and five of Pumpkin Patch’s 36 UK […]


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