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Tuesday, 3 January 2017


BREAKING NEWS - The choux bun mentioned below has been eaten!

I read this item this morning on the BBC News website:
Dentists have criticised "workplace cake culture", saying the sharing of sweet treats in the office is contributing to health problems.
The Faculty of Dental Surgery said people should cut down on eating cake and biscuits at work as it added to obesity and poor oral health. 
Professor Nigel Hunt said the UK needed "a culture change" at work.
Tips to cut back on sugar included keeping it as a lunchtime treat and hiding snacks out of view.
Professor Hunt, dean of the faculty at the Royal College of Surgeons, said it may be a case of managers wanting to reward staff, colleagues wanting to celebrate or people bringing presents back from their holidays that sees sugary snacks going into the workplace.
But he said it was detrimental to employees' health and they should make a New Year's resolution to "combat cake culture" in 2017.
(Here's the link to the BBC News page - 
I am not denying there is a problem with food consumption nor am I in any position to pontificate on medical matters but I do object to people continually trying to suck all the fun out of life.
Every year we pass through December with an epidemic (I can use dramatic words too!) of advertising encouragement to buy as much food and drink as we can, to eat, drink and be merry and to feast, people, to feast like there ain't no tomorrow. Come the midnight bells of New Year and out pour all the nutritionists, fitness gurus and, save us from them, do-gooder, self-important, self-serving celebrities with their books and DVDs about "lifestyle". That bastard sugar takes a pasting and its sinister partner salt gets a drubbing. Buy strawberries, said one guy this morning on TV, instead of pizza. Good luck with that one. Why can't we buy both? 
I understand there is a lot of work to do with regard to food, food pricing, dietary advice, parental responsibility and so on. Get on with it, all you 'experts' but resist the urge to suck all the fun out of life. Stop inventing 'crises' like workplace 'cake culture'. Stop taking all the flavour out of food too. 
As for supermarkets, here's an idea for them that would help us stupid customers to make the right decisions. I blogged this in 2014. While you ponder it, I am licking my lips in anticipation of a custard-filled choux bun dusted with icing sugar with my coffee at 11 o'clock. Yummo.


Food, diet, health all have their actual or well-spun controversies, crises, epidemics, etc.  The obsession with reducing plastic bags (don't get me started on that one) seems to be much more important than actually changing behaviour on what we put into our cakeholes.

Supermarkets need a bloody good overhaul to make things clear to the dumb, dense, witless public (for that is what we are folks in the minds of the behavioural nudgers in politics and business).  So, here it is again.  My revolutionary supermarket layout to satisfy nanny and matron, and to guide us to the promised land of long life and happiness..

All the talk about retail regeneration, clarity for customers and healthy living, got me thinking that all food stores, large, medium and small, should adopt the simplest form of layout.  

Asking customers to read product labels is a non-starter. Too much information. Too much blah. Too much CYA verbiage.  Here's the solution:

4 sections all painted - floors, walls, ceiling to avoid any confusion:

Green zone: Contains all food and drink that Matron says is very, very good for us.

Amber zone: Contains all food and drink that Matron says is not too risky

Red Zone: Contains all food and drink that Matron says is bad for us - but it's our choice to enter this zone

Black zone - for all food and drink that Matron considers extremely bad for us even though it might be the tastiest selection - enter if you dare!

There you go.

It's worth a pilot, surely.

Food and drink retailing is saved.

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