You either love it or declare it illegal

7 June 2011
Saint Homobonus, patron saint of procurementThe furore over Denmark’s Marmite ban could have unintended consequences for the Danish economy, according to The Guardian, which warns the restriction on vitamin-enriched products will not help Denmark in its efforts to retain skilled foreign workers at multinational firms such as Lego and Vestas. “Ban their pastries” was the suggestion from one online hawk. But how will we survive breakfast meetings then? Latte-to-go for busy babies On the subject of surviving meetings, I can’t function without my morning skinny mochachochaccino. So it’s good to see that Nestlé is reaching out to the next generation with its new BabyNes machine, the “baby milk equivalent of Nespresso” according to Reuters. “Product innovation is one of Nestlé’s strategies for managing volatile costs of raw materials such as cocoa beans, coffee and milk,” Reuters explains. Just make sure you use the right machine or you could find yourself gurgling happily in the Land of Nod during a particularly soothing finance presentation – or worse, trying to calm a caffeine-crazed infant. North Korea set to go green? It is heartening to know that Kim Jong-il is working towards a sustainable energy plan for North Korea. On a recent trip to China he asked to visit a solar energy plant, presumably because his ambitions surrounding nuclear power aren’t working out quite as he hoped. Admittedly, solar armageddon sounds a lot less threatening than the nuclear kind, and we await with interest the content of Jong-il’s next CSR report. Trouser trouble Bulging bobbies in a tight spot Female police officers want new-style trousers because their uniform is too “tight around the thighs”, according to the Evening Standard. A working group is looking at improving the comfort of police uniform, and its findings will “feed into an Association of Chief Police Officers’ strategic group on uniform, which will make a final decision later in the year”, the report says. Could a temporary return to skirts offer a solution? I find my outfit (see above) allows a wide range of activities, although I haven’t tried chasing criminals. Spice up your sandwiches Cheesed off by cheddar? Bored with BLT? The British Sandwich Association has been working to liven up your lunch with its annual industry awards, the Sammies, which includes the prestigious title of Sandwich Designer of the Year. This year’s overall prize was scooped by Greencore employee Sumaya El Kroni from Bromley-by-Bow, who wowed the judges with her chicken, lemon, coriander, roast vegetable and salad flatbread creation. Other winning recipes in the individual ingredient categories included grilled chorizo sausage, chunky tomato chutney, manchego cheese with mixed baby leaves dressed with olive oil in grilled sourdough roll; Alaska Salmon and wasabi wrap with beetroot slaw and peashoots; and smoked Port Salut, carrot and coriander raita with Brinjal pickle. Of course, by the time you’ve managed to say your order lunchtime will be over. Granularity breeds contempt A recent SM blog post by editor Steve Bagshaw looked at the subject of “management-speak”: words such as “leverage”, “granules” and “incent”, which was the neologism du jour at a recent US conference. “A perfectly good word can have been around for hundreds of years, minding its own business… Then wham. Somebody starts using it – or even worse mangling it and using it – and before we know it, everybody is (mis)using it,” he blogged. His comments produced some enthusiastic posts from readers, one of whom really got into the spirit of things. He wrote: “I think it’s good of Steve to drill down to this level of granularity so that we can all eyeball the facts as he sees them going forward in real time.” Anybody out there need a keynote speaker? Tweet of the month @NonTechChick I wonder if Darth Vader got into contract disputes and procurement cycles with his strategic suppliers.
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