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Food scares and stricter pig production rules across Europe will all be good for the bacon, sausage and cooked meats group Cranswick, its chairman said yesterday.

Hague demands curbs on Danish bacon

THE TORY leader, William Hague, called yesterday for Danish bacon to be banned from Britain's supermarket shelves in an attempt to protect UK farmers from "unfair" competition.

Meat processors' pounds 150m merger

TWO OF BRITAIN'S biggest privately-owned meat processors, Dalehead Foods and Roach Foods, are to merge in a pounds 150m deal. The combined group, to be known as Flagship Foods, will have sales of pounds 270m and 2,400 employees and will be the country's second biggest supplier of pork, bacon and cooked meats to supermarkets after Unigate.

Car insurance price rise is ten times rate of inflation

THE COST of car insurance has surged by more than 10 times the rate of inflation over the past year, according to government figures published yesterday.

Words; aestivate, v.

"SUMMERTIME AND the cotton is high." Du Bose Heyward did not pun in his lyric for George Gershwin's song, but it comes to mind as such amid the matted T-shirts on outstretched limbs in London's ramshackle Tube. One longs to aestivate; that is, to spend the summer in suspended animation - from Latin for summer, the equivalent of hibernation. As Bacon wrote, with an alternative spelling, "a grotto is a place of shade, of estivation".

Music: Beating around the bush

New Music: RHYTHM STICKS; SOUTH BANK CENTRE, LONDON

Letter: Moon legacy wasted

Sir: With reference to your leading article "The empty legacy of the Moon landings" (17 July) I feel, as the daughter of the scientist responsible for a major British contribution to the success of the mission, that much greater benefit could have accrued.

Art house

The late Francis Bacon's South Kensington studio may suggest a life spinning wildly out of control, but, writes Beryl Bainbridge, nothing could be further from the truth. Photographs by Perry Ogden

We'll live to regret it

There was doom and gloom all over the place last week. If you are reading this it suggests that, despite Nostradamus's prediction, the world didn't end. But surviving a global conflagration means we could live for a very long time to come. The problem with that? Most of us are going to have to stretch very little money over very many years.

Early return is a distant hope for most refugees

EVEN IF the details of a peacekeeping force for Kosovo can be rapidly agreed, many if not most of the refugees will spend the winter in Albania and Macedonia, US officials said yesterday.

Food: Pesto control

It's a perfect recipe that has stood the test of time. So just why do certain chefs seem intent on messing with the formula? Photograph by Kevin Summers

Words: chawbacon, n.

THE OTHER night at the Lincoln Center, the New York Philharmonic played Mahler's Fourth, but Michael Steinberg's programme note nagged. He said of the Fourth's early reception: "The very qualities that Mahler had banked on were the ones that annoyed. The bells, real and imitated (in flutes), with which the music begins! And that chawbacon tune in the violins!"

My Biggest Mistake: Joe McNally - I failed to put long-term benefits above short-term pains

Joe McNally, now in his early 50s, went to the meat business FMC Harris, where he became a managing director. He founded Compaq in the UK in 1984

Food And Drink: This little piggy ...

In these joyless days of low-fat breakfasts, a heartwarming tale of good husbandry and a free-range British porker. Illustration by Stephen Fowler

Letter: A modified choice

Sir: The only wholly accurate statement about GM foods was made by Francis Bacon about 400 years ago: "Those counsels to which Time hath not been called, Time will not ratify." Such was the case with asbestos, DDT, Thalidomide, umpteen poisonous agricultural chemicals, animal offal in cattle feed, BSE and so on. The public obviously share Bacon's common- sense view.

Your holiday disaster: Fiona Bacon arrived in Santiago four days late, thin, miserable and starving

"WOULD PASSENGER Fiona Bacon, travelling to Santiago, please make herself known at the flight desk?" Deceptively good news awaited me; the airline had overbooked my flight - would I be prepared to switch to another slightly later, in return for an upgrade? I called my boyfriend in Chile and accepted the offer, looking forward to a better class of bench in the business class lounge. Stuffed full of dry roasted peanuts and Bloody Marys, I arrived at my newly designated gate. I was alarmed to find that the flight would be stopping twice en route - at Aruba and Guayaquil - but the wide seats and lavish toilet bags in business class quelled my fears.
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