Govt must rethink VAT hike on food supplements following Vitamin D revelations – IAHS

first_imgHealth Stores Ireland has today reiterated its call on the Government to halt plans to impose VAT on food supplementsThe calls come after a Donegal GP has said vitamin D test results coming from Letterkenny University Lab have been so low scientists first thought the machines were not calibrated properly.VAT at 23 per cent was due to come in from March but that has been deferred to November to allow the Minister for Finance to examine options. A public consultation in Ireland over April and May received 121 submissions, most of them calling for the retention of the zero rate.Speaking today Matt Ronan of Health Stores Ireland said: “The report from Donegal reinforces the need for many people to take food supplements to help with health concerns and prevent illness.“Imposing VAT on food supplements, such as vitamin D, would mean food supplements will become more expensive to consumers and may compromise their health as a result.“We would like 0% VAT maintained on all health food supplements so that they are affordable to all.  Many people take a range of supplements to help maintain their health and vitamin D is particularly important in the fight against osteoporosis. “The reports today highlight how important food supplements are for many looking to maintain their health.”Govt must rethink VAT hike on food supplements following Vitamin D revelations – IAHS was last modified: August 14th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Banyana draw with African champions

first_img5 June 2012South Africa’s national women’s football team, Banyana Banyana, recorded a good 1-1 draw with continental powerhouse Nigeria in a friendly international played at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Phokeng, near Rustenburg on Sunday.Sadly, the good result against the African champions was undermined by Bafana Bafana’s disappointing 1-1 draw against 138th ranked Ethiopia, which captured most of the headlines.The Nigerian side was considerably different to the one that lifted the African Women’s Championship title in South Africa in 2010 after defeating Equatorial Guinea 4-2 in the final, but they brought with them the pedigree of a nation that has won eight out of nine African Women’s Championships.DominatedSouth Africa dominated the first half and came closest to scoring when captain Amanda Dlamini headed a cross from Nonthando Vilakazi wide of goal.However, against the run of play, it was experienced striker Stella Chinyere who put the visitors ahead in the 62nd minute when she ran onto a long ball and raced into the home team’s penalty area before slotting the ball past Banyana Banyana goalkeeper Roxanne Barker.Down by a goal, Banyana showed fight and took the game to the Nigerians. They were rewarded with a goal 12 minutes from time.GoalIn-form Portia Modise struck for the third time in three matches from close range after getting onto the end of the cross from the left. It was her 69th goal in 90 internationals.Nigeria’s coach Kadiri Ikhana, who was in charge of the Super Falcons for only the second time, told The Sowetan after the match that South Africa needed to improve its performance in the final third of the field.“I think their attack is zero, as far as I’m concerned,” he opined. “They have some quality players, but need to work hard to boost their attack.“I think South Africa still have work to do,” Ikhana said about South Africa’s participation in the 2012 London Olympic Games.‘They will have to work harder’“They have to work harder because they will be representing Africa.”Banyana and the Super Falcons meet in another friendly on 23 June in Abuja, Nigeria.Before that game, South Africa face Zambia in an African Women’s Championship qualifier return leg fixture in Nelspruit on 16 June.Banyana won the first leg match 4-1 in Lusaka in May.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

US Department of Defense Embraces Open Source

first_imgAt the US Department of Defense, open source and proprietary software are now on equal footing. According to Defense Department guidance issued yesterday (PDF), open-source software (OSS) should be treated just like any other software product. The document also specifies some of the advantages of OSS for the Department of Defense (DoD). These include the ability to quickly alter the code as situations and missions change, the stability of the software because of the broad peer-review, as well as the absence of per-seat licensing costs.The document also stresses that OSS is “particularly suitable for rapid prototyping and experimentation, where the ability to ‘test drive’ the software with minimal costs and administrative delays can be important.”Clarifying OSS MisconceptionsThe DoD already uses some open-source products. This new memorandum is meant to provide guidance on the use of OSS and to clarify some misconceptions. According to the DoD, these misconceptions have hampered “effective DoD use and development of OSS.”One of these misconceptions is that the DoD would have to distribute any changes made to the OSS code. In reality, most open-source licenses permit users to modify code for internal use and these organizations only have to make the changes public if they distribute the code outside of their organizations. It’s good to see the government embrace open-source software – though some members of the open-source movement will feel a bit queasy about the DoD using their software. Just last week, the White House website became a Drupal site and hopefully other branches of government will follow the DoD’s lead and embrace open source as a valid means of acquiring and developing software.DOD Open Source Rules 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#news#web frederic lardinoislast_img read more

It’s the Little Things

first_imgI was hired a few years ago to consult on a new luxury residence to make the house as green as possible. At about 7,500 square feet, many people would argue that it could never be a green home, but as I was brought in after the design was complete, my job was to do the best I could with what I was given to work with. While the builder, Mike LaBelle, had no prior experience in high-performance homes, luckily for everyone, he was very interested and enthusiastic about learning how to build better.We had some very good, open discussions on how this new, high-performance home would work differently than the owner’s existing older home, and the builder, the owner, and I worked together to make the best decisions for the project. ICFs were selected for the wall structure early in the process, primarily for aesthetic reasons. My recommendations included a spray-foam insulated roofline to bring the attic furnace and ducts into conditioned space, solar water heating, high-performance HVAC systems, and an ERV.So far, so goodConstruction went smoothly, and the builder ultimately decided to have the house certified as an EarthCraft House, achieving a HERS index of 56 and meeting the then-available federal tax credit threshold. The owners moved in, and all was well in the world of luxury housing.After a few months, I heard from both the owner and the contractor that the power bills seemed very high. We discussed possible problems, and I offered to come out to the site to help figure out their problem. Ultimately, the owner hired Southface Energy Institute to investigate the problem.The culpritsA mechanical engineer from Southface did a thorough review of the energy usage and equipment in the house, and generously provided me with a copy of his report on the house. The heating and cooling loads were appropriately low for a house of this type, but the electrical baseload was through the roof at about 7,000 kWh per month.Inspections of the existing house systems identified three items that together accounted for over 6,000 kWh of the baseload: a hot water pump, pool pumps, and HVAC supply fans. After the house was occupied, a continuous pump was installed to create a hot water circulation loop to eliminate the wait for hot water in the bathrooms. This pump was installed on the electric backup tank rather than the solar storage tank, causing the electric elements to run continuously as the water was being circulated around the house in an uninsulated line. This accounted for about 4,000 kWh per month.Two pool pumps — one for filtering, one for vacuuming — were running full time, adding another 1,400 kWh per month. Finally, the owners kept the furnace blowers on full time (not realizing that the ERV provided necessary fresh air throughout the house), adding another 900 kWh to the baseload.Simple solutionsRecently, the continuous hot water pump was changed out with a timed pump, the pool pumps were set on timers to run only when needed, and the furnace fans were set to auto. Results are not yet in, but it is expected that these changes will help bring the baseload down to a reasonable level and allow the owners to benefit from the high-performance home they live in. I will report on the progress as I learn more.As the consultant, I was not involved in the pool equipment selection, nor do I have the expertise to make appropriate recommendations in this area. I will, however, research pool equipment for any future projects and share my knowledge with new clients.I always recommend against hot water circulation loops, opting for demand-operated systems. The pump was probably added at the suggestion of the plumber — a typical solution for long hot water runs, with no consideration of the energy penalty involved.Keeping the furnace fans on full time may have been a habit left over from the owner’s previous house or possibly a suggestion of the HVAC contractor; in either case, it was a poor decision that added to excess electrical use.Lessons learnedWhat I took away from this project is the need for everyone involved to always keep the big picture in mind throughout the process, to maintain open communication, and to avoid making changes and additions in a vacuum. The entire construction team must stay in communication throughout the project and stick to the plan; no one should make any changes unless they are considered in the context of the whole house and its systems. Finally, commissioning of mechanical systems is important but rarely done in residential construction; this situation should change.Fortunately, the problems with this project proved to be relatively minor and simple to correct. A less-conscientious builder could have made significant changes and created problems with the building envelope or moisture management that would have been complicated and costly to correct. In this case, all that was needed were some minor adjustments, and the only penalty was some wasted energy.last_img read more

White House Takes Small Step To Patent Reform By Vetoing iPhone Ban

first_imgThe Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Related Posts Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Tags:#Apple#Patents#Samsung dan rowinskicenter_img The White House has decided that it wants to have a say in the in the ongoing patent wars that have waged between smartphone manufacturers over the past several years. This weekend, the Obama administration vetoed a ruling from the International Trade Commission that called for an import ban on older Apple mobile products, including the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPad 3G and iPad 2 3G after the ITC found those products infringed on a patent from Samsung. The ITC veto is the first of its kind in nearly 25 years, The Wall Street Journal reports. Samsung had won the ruling to ban long-tail Apple products from the ITC in June based on patents surrounding cellular connectivity and wireless standards.U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman of the Obama administration explained that the White House is vetoing the ITC’s ruling based on the fact that Samsung’s patents are what are known as “standard essential patents.” These standard patents usually concern technologies that are pivotal for every device to perform basic operations, such as using cellular connectivity.In January this year, the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a new policy on standard essential patents stating that those type of patents need to be licensed by their holders on “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory” terms and as such should not be used in cases of patent litigation between two companies. The January policy stemmed from a ruling by the Federal Trade Commission on a Google antitrust case and the use of the patents it acquired when it bought Motorola in August 2011.Froman explained the veto in a letter to Irving A. Williamson, chairman of the ITC:The Policy Statement expresses substantial concerns, which I strongly share, about the potential harms that can result from owners of standards-essential patents (“SEPs”) who have made a voluntary commitment to offer license SEPs on terms that are fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (“FRAND”), gaining undue leverage and engaging in “patent hold-up”, i.e., asserting the patent to exclude an implementer of the standard from a market to obtain a higher price for use of the patent than would have been possible before the standard was set, when alternative technologies could have been chosen.The Effect On Patent LawsuitsAccording to The Wall Street Journal, Samsung was disappointed in the ruling, feeling that it has tried to license these patents to Apple in the correct legal manner and that Apple has been unwilling to accept the license. For its part, Apple lauded the Obama administration for “standing up for innovation” and that Samsung was wrong to abuse the patent system.The belief among many essential patent holders is that the administration’s decision was a bad one, upsetting a status quo that has developed over decades in how essential patents are licensed. The ITC injunction against the importation of Apple products that had not licensed the patent in question from Samsung was a bit of a surprise given that usually standard essential patents lawsuits do not end up in import bans and the parties are usually forced into a FRAND licensing agreement. On the other hand, many people will ask that if the situations had been reversed and it was Apple that had an import ban on Samsung based on essential patents, would the White House would have vetoed the ITC ruling? Apple is a darling in the U.S. tech industry and a favorite among many government officials. Was the White House playing favorites for one of the country’s biggest tech companies?The ITC obviously won’t like the veto, just on the basis that the White House undercut its decision making in a fairly important case. Froman was careful in his letter to Williamson to say that the veto was, “not an endorsement or a criticism of the Commission’s decision or analysis.” He said that Samsung may still pursue its case through the court system.The ITC has become a central figure in patent battles in the U.S., as companies go to the agency to get quick results on patent fights rather than duking it out in Federal courts in cases that can often take months or years before going to trial. If the ITC has its authority diminished by the threat of presidential veto, companies with patent issues may choose to keep their battles in the courts, spending more time and effort on legal maneuverings. Consumers may get something good out of this, though: they will likely see less bans on smartphones and tablets including both new models and long-tail units, such as the older iPhones and iPads at issue in this case.The iPhone 4 and iPad 2 are both still available to consumers in the U.S. but perhaps not for long. Apple traditionally sunsets discounted older products when it comes out with newer models. The new iPhone is expected to be announced by Apple near the end of September while newer iPads are expected by the end of the year. So, while the effect to consumers in the short term from this ruling is likely minimal, the overall precedent set by the White House in this case could have effects on future patent battles between tech giants. What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagementlast_img read more

Seven northeastern States lag behind in toilets for schoolgirls

first_imgAn average of 34.96% schools in the eight northeastern states had usable toilets for girls in 2018 compared to 36.66% in 2016, data analysed from the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2018 report revealed.With 75.7% schools – a marginal increase from 75% in 2016 – having usable toilets for girls, Sikkim performed better than the national average of 66.4% last year. But the State’s show was overshadowed by the less-than-satisfactory performance by seven other states in the region.Nagaland was the next best State with 47%, an increase from 40.9% in 2016, followed by Mizoram with the highest percentile increase from 25.3% to 34.9% in these two years.The other five states performed poorly, the steepest drop for Assam being 38.3% from 54.2% in 2016. Manipur had 9.1% schools having fewer usable toilets for girls, followed by Meghalaya (8.6%), Arunachal Pradesh (7.6%) and Tripura (7.3%).J&K suffers too The national averages hide major variations across the states, with deficiencies particularly marked in Jammu and Kashmir apart from most of the north-eastern states, the ASER report, prepared by NGO Pratham, said. In Jammu and Kashmir, 48.2% schools had toilets for girls last year, up from 46.7% in 2014 (data for J&K for 2016 was not available). The State provided drinking water in 54.6% schools in 2018, better than the average 44.4% schools in the north-eastern states.The average for the Northeast last year was poorer than the 44.99% in 2016. Sikkim, Assam and Mizoram had an average 68.53% schools that had drinking water facilities in schools. The national average was 74.8%.According to the report, 2018 completed eight years of compulsory schooling for the first cohort of students to benefit from Right to Education Act 2010.National picture“Nationally, substantial improvements are visible over this eight-year period in the availability of many school facilities mandated by RTE. The fraction of schools with usable girls’ toilets doubled, reaching 66.4% in 2018. The percentage of schools with books, other than textbooks, available rose from 62.6% to 74.2% between 2016-18.last_img read more

Oceana Hotel to be Sold to NHF for $350 Million

first_imgCabinet has approved the sale of the Oceana Hotel complex to the National Health Fund (NHF) for $350 million.The Ministry of Health will continue to occupy the building, which will be rehabilitated, to provide an improved environment for Ministry staff and the public.Minister with responsibility for Information, Senator the Hon. Sandrea Falconer, in making the announcement at the weekly Jamaica House press briefing on Wednesday, March 20, said the building is in need of significant repairs, mainly to the roof and the air conditioning system.The property was advertised for sale in 2008 and 2009, and again in 2012, at which time the NHF expressed an interest in acquiring the building.Chairman of the NHF, Sterling Soares, said the roof refurbishing will be put to tender soon, with the work expected to begin by mid-year, and completed within six months.He said the plan is for the building to be used for other purposes, such as housing on two to three floors, and commercial activities on the ground floor.Mr. Soares noted that the Ministry is also looking to house a medical facility at the location.The Oceana Hotel was opened in 1977 with 388 rooms, and the building was modified in 1996, and leased to the Ministry in 1997.By Alphea Saunders, JIS Reporterlast_img read more

GapKids Collaboration With Ellen DeGeneres Encourages Positive Social Engagement

first_imgGapKids has partnered with ED, Ellen DeGeneres’ new lifestyle brand to launch GapKids x ED, a limited edition apparel collection and campaign that encourages girls everywhere to be themselves, do what makes them happy and take pride in who they are.GapKids x ED Campaign ImageLaunching today in over 25 markets around the world, the collection, and supporting campaign, is rooted in the same core values that Gap brand has stood for over the past 45 years. Individualism and liberation that comes from confidently being your most authentic self are core values Gap shares with American comedian, talk show host, producer, writer and actress, Ellen DeGeneres.The GapKids x ED campaign features six young girls who have excelled at skateboarding, drumming, robotics and entrepreneurialism, by being true to themselves, regardless of naysayers or outdated stereotypes. These girls, Alexey, Relz, Ryann, Bellatreas, Torrae and Asia, ranging in age from 7 to 12, star in the anthem film and campaign images which all provoke a feeling of strength, empowerment and pure enjoyment. Whether it is the desire to help others like Torrae who builds robotic hands for kids who need them or Alexey’s love for music and her incredible drumming skills, the campaign celebrates girls of all talents for being who they are. The print ads, which launch in August across the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, China and Japan, as well as select international franchise markets, feature the hero campaign “selfie” image of Ellen with the six girls. In addition to print, the campaign spans outdoor, mobile, direct, social, in store and digital.Well beyond stores, Gap is aiming to create an environment of positive social engagement. Using the hashtag #heyworld followed by a name, a girl’s friend, mother, father or mentor can issue a call to action for social messages of encouragement and love to any girl in need of positive support, cheering her on through the power of positive words. In addition, there will be a texting opportunity to receive inspiring and encouraging messages from Ellen DeGeneres herself.The GapKids x ED collection is built on Gap’s most loved wardrobe staples, but with an impactful twist, for girls and a selection for boys and adults as well. The collection prominently features two pieces of iconography: the lightning bolt, a symbol of empowerment, and the speech bubble, a symbol of self-expression. Both the speech bubble and lightning bolt are inscribed throughout the collection including Graphic T-Shirts for Girl’s and Boy’s ($24.95), the Girl’s Quilted Speech Bubble Bomber Jacket ($49.95), and the Adult Zip-up Sweatshirt ($49.95), among other apparel and accessories. The entire family is invited to join in on the powerful dialogue and celebration of individuality.“I know from my own experience that nothing makes you feel better than being who you are and celebrating what makes you unique. I think if we shine a light on real girls doing incredible things, that’ll encourage other girls and boys to do incredible things,” says DeGeneres. “This opportunity to partner with Gap and my new lifestyle brand, ED, is the perfect way to celebrate girls just for being who they are; and to encourage them to unleash their passions; whether it’s math, soccer, singing, dancing, or simply singing while dancing in their bedroom.”In keeping with Gap’s long term focus on youth culture, and the commitment to supporting social causes that allow women to seek out their full potential, they are partnering with select girls’ organizations that share a commitment towards girls and women, including Girls Inc (North America) and CARE (UK & Japan).Further details on the campaign can be found at Gap.com.last_img read more

Jamaicas Health Minister commended for setting up Food Industry Task Force

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Jamaica, January 29, 2018 – Kingston – The Heart Foundation of Jamaica is commending Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, for setting up the National Food Industry Task Force (NFITF) in 2017.Executive Director of the Foundation, Mrs. Deborah Chen, told a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) ‘Think Tank’ on January 24, that the organisation is pleased with the work of the NFITF, on which a representative of the Foundation serves.  Mrs. Chen, who also spoke on the upcoming observation of Heart Month in February, pointed out that members of the Task Force are food industry stakeholders.  “These are the leading persons in their industry, and they are being encouraged to reformulate their products, not just in terms of sugar, but in terms of the nutrients,” she said.She added that they are also looking at labelling, because many labels are not easily read or understood.  “I know there is a move afoot globally to make the labels simpler, and that is part of the mandate of the NFITF, so we commend the Minister and the Ministry of Health for that move.  We think that from a policy level, that will go a great way in assisting to deal with obesity and will impact the cases that we see on a daily basis at the Heart Foundation,” Mrs. Chen said.The NFITF was established to support the response to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) or ‘lifestyle diseases’.  With obesity, caused by poor nutrition, being a leading risk factor of developing an NCD, and that two out of every three deaths yearly result from NCDs, the NFITF has been engaging the Jamaican food industry in addressing the unhealthy eating habits of Jamaicans.  The Task Force is focusing on product reformulation, food labelling, marketing of foods, and education, communication and advocacy.Heart Month will be observed under the theme ‘Healthy Nutrition: Know Your Labels’.Release: JISlast_img read more

Jon Stewart Plays Drums To Benefit Suicide Prevention

first_img Jon Stewart Drums For Suicide Prevention jon-stewart-plays-drums-benefit-suicide-prevention Former GRAMMY host records with New Jersey-based band No Wine For Kittens to benefit charityRenée FabianGRAMMYs Nov 9, 2017 – 10:37 am GRAMMY winner Jon Stewart may have left the airwaves after retiring from “The Daily Show” in 2015, but he’s found a new way to entertain himself — drumming.The former GRAMMY host told TMZ last year he had taken up drumming as a hobby from New Jersey-based drum teacher Andy Bova, who happens to be a former member of the band No Wine For Kittens.The band entered indie music blog Speak Into My Good Eye’s fourth annual 24-hour songwriting challenge this year benefiting the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and they enlisted Stewart as their drummer. Their song is titled “Catastrophes,” with Rick Barry on vocals/guitar, Emily Bornemann on vocals, Andy Bova on keys, and Justin Bornemann on guitar.The full songwriting challenge album will be released Nov. 17. Those who pre-order the album via Speak Into My Good Eye’s website can get one track now. All proceeds benefit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, with a dedication in honor of the late Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington.3 Ways You Can Support Someone With A Mental Health IssueRead more Email News Jon Stewart Plays Drums To Benefit Suicide Prevention Facebook Twitter last_img read more