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How sustainable is your weekly grocery shop? These small changes can have big benefits

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/michalis-hadjikakou-129930">Michalis Hadjikakou</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/carla-archibald-283811">Carla Archibald</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ozge-geyik-1402545">Özge Geyik</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/pankti-shah-1547393">Pankti Shah</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a></em></p> <p>You might think eating more sustainably requires drastic changes, such as shifting to a <a href="https://theconversation.com/vegan-diet-has-just-30-of-the-environmental-impact-of-a-high-meat-diet-major-study-finds-210152">vegan diet</a>. While a plant-based diet is <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s43016-023-00795-w">undeniably</a> good for the Earth, our <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352550924001945#f0025">new research</a> shows modest changes to your eating habits can also have significant environmental benefits.</p> <p>We assessed how food products on Australian supermarket shelves stack up against key environmental indicators, such as carbon emissions and water use.</p> <p>We found swapping the most environmentally harmful foods for more sustainable options within the same food group, such as switching from beef burgers to chicken burgers, can significantly reduce carbon emissions – by up to 96% in some instances.</p> <p>The last thing we want to do is take the pleasure away from eating. Instead, we want to help consumers make realistic dietary changes that also help ensure a sustainable future. So read on to find out which simple food swaps can best achieve this.</p> <h2>Informing sustainable diets</h2> <p>The environmental impact of foods can be estimated using an approach known as a <a href="https://www.cell.com/one-earth/fulltext/S2590-3322(19)30128-9#:%7E:text=In%20this%20Primer%2C%20we%20introduce,cycle%20of%20a%20product%20system.">life-cycle assessment</a>.</p> <p>This involves identifying the “inputs” required along the food supply chain, such as fertiliser, energy, water and land, and tracking them from farm to fork. From this we can calculate a product’s “footprint” – or environmental impact per kilogram of product – and compare it to other foods.</p> <p>Most studies of environmental footprints focus on the raw ingredients that make up food products (such as beef, wheat or rice) rather than the packaged products people see on shelves (such as beef sausages, pasta or rice crackers). Of the studies that do focus on packaged foods, most only consider a fraction of the products available to consumers.</p> <p>What’s more, a lot of research considers only the carbon emissions of food products, excluding other important measures such as water use. And some studies use global average environmental footprints, which <a href="https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.aaq0216">vary significantly</a> between countries.</p> <p>Our research set out to overcome these limitations. We aligned environmental footprints with the products people find on supermarket shelves, and covered a huge range of food and beverage products available in Australia. We also included many environmental indicators, to allow a <a href="https://www.pnas.org/doi/full/10.1073/pnas.2120584119">more complete picture</a> of the sustainability of different foods.</p> <h2>What we did</h2> <p>Key to our research was the <a href="https://www.georgeinstitute.org.au/projects/foodswitch">FoodSwitch database</a>, which compiles food labelling and ingredient data from images of packaged food and beverages. It covers more than 90% of the Australian packaged food market.</p> <p>We combined the database with a <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959652623029748">mathematical method</a> that sums the environmental impact of ingredients, to quantify the footprint of the product as a whole.</p> <p>From this, we estimated the environmental footprint of 63,926 food products available in Australian supermarkets. We then simulated the potential benefits of making “realistic” switches between products – that is, switches within the same food category.</p> <h2>Our findings</h2> <p>The results show how making a small dietary change can have big environmental consequences.</p> <p>For a shopping basket composed of items from eight food groups, we simulate the benefits of swapping from high-impact towards medium- or low-impact food products.</p> <p>Our analysis assumes a starting point from the most environmentally harmful products in each food group – for example, sweet biscuits, cheese and beef burger patties.</p> <p>A shift to the medium-impact foods for all eight items – such as a muffin, yoghurt and sliced meat – can lead to at least a 62% reduction in environmental impact. Shifts towards the most sustainable choice for all items – bread, soy milk or raw poultry – can achieve a minimum 77% reduction.</p> <p>This analysis ends at the supermarket shelves and does not include additional food processing by the consumer. For example, raw meat will usually be cooked before human consumption, which will expand its environmental footprint to varying degrees, <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s43016-020-00200-w">depending on the method used</a>.</p> <p>See the below info-graphic for more detail. The full results are available in <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352550924001945">our study</a>.</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="sR5yB" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: 0;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/sR5yB/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <hr /> <h2>What next?</h2> <p>Many people are looking for ways to live more sustainably. Insufficient or complex information can fuel confusion and anxiety in consumers, <a href="https://theconversation.com/reducing-eco-anxiety-is-a-critical-step-in-achieving-any-climate-action-210327">leading to inaction or paralysis</a>. Consumers need more information and support to choose more sustainable foods.</p> <p>Supermarkets and retailers also have an important role to play – for example, by giving sustainable products <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/07439156211008898">prominent shelf placement</a>. Attractive pricing is also crucial – particularly in the midst of a <a href="https://theconversation.com/au/topics/cost-of-living-crisis-115238">cost-of-living crisis</a> when it can be difficult to prioritise sustainability over cost.</p> <p>Government interventions, such as information campaigns and <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/07439156211008898">taxing high-impact products</a>, can also help.</p> <p>Food labelling is also important. The European Union <a href="https://environment.ec.europa.eu/topics/circular-economy/eu-ecolabel/product-groups-and-criteria_en">is leading the way</a> with measures such as the <a href="https://docs.score-environnemental.com/v/en">eco-score</a>, which integrates 14 environmental indicators into a single score from A to E.</p> <p>Apps such as <a href="https://www.georgeinstitute.org/projects/ecoswitch">ecoSwitch</a> can also <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1326020024000268?via%3Dihub">empower consumers</a>.</p> <p>The diets of people in developed nations such as Australia <a href="https://theconversation.com/sustainable-shopping-want-to-eat-healthy-try-an-eco-friendly-diet-89086">exert a high toll on our planet</a>. More sustainable food choices are vital to achieving a <a href="https://www.thelancet.com/commissions/EAT">sustainable future for humanity</a>. We hope our research helps kick-start positive change.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/234367/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/michalis-hadjikakou-129930">Michalis Hadjikakou</a>, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Sustainability, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science, Engineering &amp; Built Environment, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/carla-archibald-283811">Carla Archibald</a>, Research Fellow, Conservation Science, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ozge-geyik-1402545">Özge Geyik</a>, Visitor, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/pankti-shah-1547393">Pankti Shah</a>, PhD student, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/deakin-university-757">Deakin University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-sustainable-is-your-weekly-grocery-shop-these-small-changes-can-have-big-benefits-234367">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Food & Wine

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Daryl Somers drops big hint over Hey Hey It's Saturday tour

<p>Daryl Somers, 72, was named Victorian of the Year during a ceremony at Melbourne Town Hall on Monday. </p> <p>During his speech, the TV veteran revealed that he was "serious" about touring highlights from his iconic show, <em>Hey Hey It's Saturday</em>.</p> <p>“I’m seriously considering going out and touring with the archives because we’ve digitised well over 20 years worth of Hey Hey,” Somers revealed.</p> <p>“There are some marvellous backstories to things that happened over that time.” </p> <p>The presenter accepted the honour for his charitable contributions and services to entertainment, after a nearly 30 year career on the show, which ran until 1999. </p> <p>He told the audience that he was a "performer at heart" and missed the excitement of live entertainment.  </p> <p>During his speech, he also admitted that even though it was an honour to receive the award, it had come at a difficult time, following the death of close friend and former co-star John Blackman, who served as <em>Hey, Hey’s</em> voiceover artist for the show. </p> <p>Blackman passed away on June 4 after a battle with cancer. </p> <p>“It is an honour, I’m a born-and-bred Victorian,” he said.</p> <p>“You think about the highs and lows in life and this is a high for me at the end of a rather solemn week.</p> <p>“Last week, we laid to rest my dear friend John Blackman. John was a passionate and loyal Victorian as well.</p> <p>“He is not here, but in part I’d like to dedicate this award to him because we had an endearing friendship. I love the guy – we went back over 50 years.”</p> <p>Somers also thanked his team and his wife, Julie for supporting him throughout his career. </p> <p>The TV veteran was also involved with plenty of charities over the years including Lost Dogs Home, Kids Under Cover and Camp Quality. </p> <p><em>Images: Channel 9</em></p>

TV

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Anti-cellulite products are big business – but here’s what the science says

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rebecca-shepherd-423135">Rebecca Shepherd</a>, <em><a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-bristol-1211">University of Bristol</a></em></p> <p>Although <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jocd.14815">90% of women have cellulite</a>, we’re yet to see it represented as a normal anatomical characteristic in popular culture. In Greta Gerwig’s 2023 Hollywood blockbuster, for instance, Stereotypical Barbie, played by Margot Robbie, develops dimples on her upper thigh as part of her existential crisis – along with other human faults such as halitosis, flat feet and irrepressible thoughts of death.</p> <p>When Stereotypical Barbie asks doll sage Weird Barbie what the dimples are, she explains: “That’s cellulite. That’s going to spread everywhere. Then you’re going to start getting sad and mushy and complicated.” Barbie’s perfect smooth plastic perfection is marred.</p> <p>Despite its prevalence, then, cellulite has been constructed as a flaw in need of correction. Consumers, it seems, agree, especially when fed a diet of the <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21604851.2021.1913827">photoshop smoothed skin</a> of models, social media influencers – and Hollywood stars.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/rmThigh1i8s?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><figcaption><span class="caption">“NO!” Barbie shouts when Weird Barbie tells her she has cellulite.</span></figcaption></figure> <p>Cellulite’s usually found in areas that have greater amounts of subcutaneous fat, when fat deposits push through the connective tissue beneath the skin, leading to a lumpy appearance. It is common, <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0738081X1300076X?via%3Dihub">usually painless</a> and harmless.</p> <p>The human skin is the <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-skin-is-a-very-important-and-our-largest-organ-what-does-it-do-91515">body’s largest organ</a>, made up of three layers. At the surface, the epidermis acts as our first line of defence against the environment. This outermost, impermeable layer is made up of cells that are constantly renewed and shed, protecting our body from external elements.</p> <p>Beneath the epidermis lies the dermis, a robust layer containing fibroblasts, the cells responsible for producing essential proteins such as collagen and elastin. These proteins provide structure and elasticity, contributing to the skin’s strength and flexibility.</p> <p>Deeper still is the hypodermis, also known as the subcutaneous layer. This layer is rich in adipose tissue – mostly made up of fat, which plays a crucial role in cushioning and insulating the body, as well as storing fat that can be used when needed. Beneath these three layers of skin, there is muscle. Running from the muscle to the dermis are <a href="https://journals.lww.com/amjdermatopathology/fulltext/2000/02000/cellulite__from_standing_fat_herniation_to.7.aspx">bands of connective tissue</a>, that holds the adipose tissue in “pockets”.</p> <p>Cellulite does not affect health, although some people report that it affects their <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07853890.2018.1561731">self-esteem and body image</a> but that’s more to do with the social pressure on women to be physically perfect – or spend money, time and energy trying to be as close to perfect as possible.</p> <p>Cellulite, then, has become big business for the beauty industry. In the lead up to summer especially, companies will promote <a href="https://www.asa.org.uk/advice-online/weight-control-cellulite.html">all manner of products</a> from creams and serums to gadgets and pills, all aimed at creating perfectly smooth limbs. The most popular question seems to be, “Do these treatments work?” but as an anatomist I think the more pressing question is, “Why are healthy women’s bodies considered something to treat, cure or correct?”</p> <p>The beauty and wellness industry has long capitalised on societal standards of beauty. The idea that cellulite is undesirable and <a href="https://journals.lww.com/dermatologicsurgery/abstract/1978/03000/So_Called_Cellulite.9.aspx">should be corrected</a> has been perpetuated since Vogue magazine was the <a href="https://archive.vogue.com/article/1968/4/cellulite-the-new-word-for-fat-you-couldnt-lose-before">first English language magazine</a> to use the term “cellulite”, introducing the concept to thousands of women. This marketing strategy taps into the insecurities of consumers, particularly women, and promotes an endless pursuit of “perfection” for bodies that have normal anatomical variation.</p> <p>By framing cellulite as a condition that needs treatment, companies can sell a wide range of products and services, bolstered by celebrity endorsements, which lend credibility and aspirational value to pseudo-medical “smoothing” products. However, there is limited scientific evidence supporting the effectiveness of these supplements in treating cellulite. In fact, the <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1524-4725.1978.tb00416.x">first scientific paper</a> on cellulite, published in 1978, referred to it as “so called cellulite: the invented disease”.</p> <p>Recent product launches include, <a href="https://lemmelive.com/en-gb/products/lemme-smooth-capsules?variant=45597048111318">Lemme Smooth</a>, Kourtney Kardashian-Barker’s latest addition to her vitamin and supplement range. The product’s promotional materials claim that the capsule “visibly reduces cellulite in 28 days”. But what does the science tell us?</p> <p>Supplements like Lemme Smooth claim to improve skin texture and reduce cellulite from within. Kardashian-Barker’s supplement contains a mixture of <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10298-015-0977-4">french cantaloupe melon</a>, hyaluronic acid, chromium and vitamin C among other ingredients. The body’s ability to absorb and utilise these ingredients in a way that would impact cellulite is still a subject of debate.</p> <p>There is evidence that <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4110621/#:%7E:text=In%20a%20randomized%2C%20double%2Dblind,in%20part%2C%20to%20the%20skin.">ingested hyaluronic acid</a> can migrate into the skin, stimulating the production of collagens within the dermis – and vitamin C has been shown to <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-72704-1">thicken the surface layer</a> of the skin. However, the lack of standardisation in testing for the use of these ingredients in the treatment of cellulite means it’s still not clear if they will have a <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-2494.2006.00318.x">significant effect</a>.</p> <p>Other products marketed to reduce the appearance of cellulite include topical creams and lotions, containing ingredients like <a href="https://karger.com/books/book/763/chapter-abstract/5600478/Specific-Use-Cosmeceuticals-for-Body-Skin-Texture?redirectedFrom=fulltext">caffeine, retinol, and herbal extracts</a>. Cosmetic products are not able to penetrate the epidermis enough to significantly affect the underlying fat deposits and connective tissue.</p> <p>Some invasive treatments, such as <a href="https://www.aad.org/public/cosmetic/fat-removal/cellulite-treatments-what-really-works">laser therapy, subcision, and acoustic wave therapy</a> can offer more promising results. These procedures work by breaking down the connective tissue bands that cause dimpling and stimulating collagen production in the dermis to improve skin elasticity. While these methods <a href="https://www.aad.org/public/cosmetic/fat-removal/cellulite-treatments-what-really-works">may be more effective</a>, they are often expensive, require multiple sessions to achieve results – and aren’t without risk.</p> <p>Maintaining a healthy diet, drinking lots of water, and regular physical activity can help improve the overall appearance of the skin and reduce the visibility of cellulite. Losing weight and strengthening the muscles in the legs, buttocks and abdomen may make cellulite less noticeable, but it won’t make it <a href="https://jndc-chemistryarticles.info/ijn/article/318">disappear altogether</a>.</p> <p>The bottom line, though, is that cellulite does not need to be treated. It’s a normal anatomical variation that’s been transformed into a condition driving a lucrative market for cures <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40257-015-0129-5">that don’t exist</a>.</p> <p>My top expert advice in the run up to summer? Be wary of claims from cosmetic companies and save your money.</p> <hr /> <p><em>The Conversation has approached the Lemme Live brand for comment.</em><!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232318/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rebecca-shepherd-423135">Rebecca Shepherd</a>, Senior Lecturer in Human Anatomy, School of Anatomy, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-bristol-1211">University of Bristol</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/anti-cellulite-products-are-big-business-but-heres-what-the-science-says-232318">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

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Yes, Australia’s big supermarkets have been price gouging. But fixing the problem won’t be easy

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bree-hurst-174985">Bree Hurst</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/carol-richards-153226">Carol Richards</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/hope-johnson-125018">Hope Johnson</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rudolf-messner-1373038">Rudolf Messner</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p>A much-awaited report into Coles and Woolworths has found what many customers have long believed – Australia’s big supermarkets engage in price gouging.</p> <p>What <a href="https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Supermarket_Prices/SupermarketPrices/Terms_of_Reference">started</a> as a simple Senate inquiry into grocery prices and supermarket power has delivered a lengthy 195-page-long <a href="https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Supermarket_Prices/SupermarketPrices/Supermarket_Prices">report</a> spanning supermarket pricing’s impact on customers, food waste, relationships with suppliers, employee wages and conditions, excessive profitability, company mergers and land banking.</p> <p>The report makes some major recommendations, including giving courts the power to break up anti-competitive businesses, and strengthening the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).</p> <p>It also recommends making the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct mandatory for supermarket chains. This code governs how they should deal with suppliers. The government’s recent <a href="https://treasury.gov.au/consultation/c2024-510813">Independent Review of the Food and Grocery Code</a> also recommended making it mandatory for the supermarket giants.</p> <p>But at this point it’s hard to say what, if anything, the recommendations will mean for everyday Australians and the prices they actually pay.</p> <h2>Price gouging isn’t illegal</h2> <p>At the heart of the Senate inquiry was the question of whether Australian supermarkets were price gouging. According to the committee, the answer is a “resounding yes”, despite the evidence presented by supermarkets to the contrary.</p> <p>Price gouging is when businesses exploit a lack of competition by setting prices well above cost price. But the practice is <a href="https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/pricing/setting-prices-whats-allowed">not explicitly illegal</a>.</p> <p>The committee put forward a number of recommendations that could help reduce price gouging. These include making it an offence to charge excess prices and establishing a new “Commission on Prices and Competition” to examine price setting practices in different sectors.</p> <p>The committee also wants the ACCC to be given enhanced powers to investigate and prosecute unfair trading practices, and to be better funded and resourced.</p> <p>The committee says supermarket claims that price gouging does not exist should mean the giants have nothing to fear under tougher legislation. However, it says:</p> <blockquote> <p>the evidence brought forward by people willing to speak out about the business practices of Coles and Woolworths suggests that maintaining margins and increasing margin growth is occurring at the expense of suppliers, consumers, and best business practices, and without proper justification.</p> </blockquote> <h2>It’s unlikely we’ll see relief anytime soon</h2> <p>Will these recommendations actually deliver any relief on prices? It’s hard to say at this point. The recommendations put forward are comprehensive, but they’re unlikely to result in any short-term change for consumers.</p> <p>At any rate, the Albanese government does not support many of them. In the report’s additional commentary, Labor senators argue that Australian competition law already addresses excessive pricing by prohibiting misleading and deceptive conduct. They also don’t support establishing a new commission to examine prices.</p> <p>Rather, the report calls for a dramatic overhaul of current regulatory settings, which it says are “not appropriate or fit for purpose”. This is not going to be an easy or fast process.</p> <h2>What does the report mean for the Greens’ divestiture bill?</h2> <p>While the inquiry was underway, the Greens <a href="https://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;page=0;query=BillId%3As1413%20Recstruct%3Abillhome">introduced a bill</a> which would give courts “divestiture powers”. This means a corporation could be ordered to sell some of its assets to reduce its market power.</p> <p>While the bill lacks support from the major parties, the committee suggested that such divestiture powers should be introduced specifically for the supermarket sector. Where abuse of market power was able to be proven, supermarkets could be forced to sell certain stores.</p> <p>While Australia does not have divestiture powers in this context, some other countries do. In New Zealand, the UK and the US, courts can force corporations that are abusing their market power to sell components of their business. Such powers are very rarely used, but the deterrent they impose can be <a href="https://theconversation.com/its-time-to-give-australian-courts-the-power-to-break-up-big-firms-that-behave-badly-226726">highly influential</a> on corporate behaviour.</p> <p>Labor rejects creating any forms of divestiture power in the report’s additional commentary. But the Coalition isn’t entirely against the idea, noting that it “does not believe the committee has persuasively found that divestiture powers should not be pursued at all” and that “divestiture powers should be targeted to sectors of concern”.</p> <h2>What’s next?</h2> <p>At this stage, the report suggests there’s only one action all political parties agree on at this stage: making the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct mandatory and ensuring its full enforcement. We’re unlikely to see much unity on the other recommendations.</p> <p>In a scathing commentary, the Coalition argues the report represents “a missed opportunity to address some of the structural imbalances in our supermarket sector that are impacting Australia’s growers, farmers, small businesses, and ultimately consumers”.</p> <p>While this is a harsh assessment, the reality is that unless these structural imbalances in our food system are addressed, we’re unlikely to see meaningful change.</p> <p>The report draws on substantial evidence to paint a troubling picture of the food system in Australia – in particular, how growers and consumers are struggling. The task for regulators is working out what mechanisms can be used to address the imbalance of power in the market, in a way that doesn’t force growers or Australian consumers to bear the cost.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/229602/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bree-hurst-174985">Bree Hurst</a>, Associate Professor, Faculty of Business and Law, QUT, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/carol-richards-153226">Carol Richards</a>, Professor, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/hope-johnson-125018">Hope Johnson</a>, ARC DECRA Fellow, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rudolf-messner-1373038">Rudolf Messner</a>, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credit: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/yes-australias-big-supermarkets-have-been-price-gouging-but-fixing-the-problem-wont-be-easy-229602">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Money & Banking

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"Big one for shenanigans": Aussie larrikin paddles a giant pumpkin down a river

<p>In potentially the most Aussie story ever and a suspected world first, one bloke has pinched his mate's award-winning pumpkin to turn into a paddle boat and sail down the Tumut River. </p> <p>The enormous pumpkin was grown by farmer Mark Peacock, who grew the vegetable to a whopping 407kg and would regularly post updates on the gourd's growing progress on Facebook. </p> <p>The pumpkin even earned a fitting name, Tormund after a character in Game of Thrones, and was used to feed his livestock.</p> <p>After the pumpkin had served its purpose, Peacock's friend and local canoe club commodore Adam Farquharson saw a once in a lifetime opportunity. </p> <p>Sporting a sailor hat and pipe, he navigated the hollowed-out pumpkin, dubbed ‘Cinderella’, down the Tumut River in New South Wales’ Riverina region, much to the amusement of bystanders.</p> <p>“Barry Humphries said that he’s a big fan of the unnecessary, and I am too. I’m a big one for shenanigans,” he told <em><a title="www.abc.net.au" href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-04-16/man-turns-mammoth-400kg-pumpkin-into-a-canoe/103708438">ABC Riverena</a></em><a title="www.abc.net.au" href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-04-16/man-turns-mammoth-400kg-pumpkin-into-a-canoe/103708438">.</a></p> <p>While initially surprised by Farquharson’s antics, Mr Peacock acknowledged that it was characteristic of his friend’s sense of humour to do something out of the ordinary to make people smile. </p> <p>“He’s really hilarious. But he’s random, occasionally,” he said.</p> <p>“I intentionally grew this as a family project and then started doing Facebook updates every week.”</p> <p>For Mr Farquharson, the voyage was simply about enjoying himself and giving locals an opportunity for a laugh. </p> <p>Farquharson joked about potential future exploits but remained grounded about his brief moment of fame as “Popeye the Pumpkin Man.” </p> <p>“I think the worldwide fame will wear off pretty soon. I won’t end up like Taylor Swift. I’ll just get back to life as normal,” he said.</p> <p>Reflecting on the unusual journey, Mr Farquharson humorously considered preserving the pumpkin as a national curiosity by placing it on a pedestal among Australian sporting royalty. </p> <p>“It was a sad moment. I did jokingly say to my wife that I should petition the prime minister to have it preserved and put next to Phar Lap’s heart at the National Museum,” he told the <em>ABC</em>.</p> <p>“She thought I was an idiot.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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"EXCITING UPDATE!": Big news on Molly the Magpie

<p>In a heartwarming turn of events, Gold Coast residents <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">Juliette Wells </span><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">and Reece Mortensen have received an exciting update that has filled their hearts with joy and relief.</span></p> <p>After a series of ups and downs surrounding the fate of their cherished pet magpie, Molly, the couple has finally been granted a glimmer of hope, thanks to their unwavering determination and the power of community support.</p> <p>The journey began with the unlikely friendship between Molly and the couple's beloved Staffordshire bull terrier, Peggy. <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">From cuddling sessions to playful romps, </span><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">their bond captured the hearts of many as Juliette documented their playful antics and heartwarming moments on social media. </span></p> <p>However, their joy was soon overshadowed by complaints to the Department of Environment, Science and Innovation, forcing the family to make the heartbreaking decision to <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/outcry-after-authorities-seize-internet-famous-magpie-from-queensland-family" target="_blank" rel="noopener">surrender Molly in March</a>. Despite the challenges they faced, Juliette and Reece refused to lose hope and tirelessly advocated for Molly's return to their loving home.</p> <p>Their perseverance paid off when they reached out to the office of Queensland Premier Steven Miles, igniting a chain of events that would ultimately lead to a long-awaited phone call. With relief flooding their hearts, Juliette shared the news with their followers on social media, announcing, "WE HAVE AN EXCITING UPDATE!!!!"</p> <p>The call, from someone closely associated with the Director General of the Department of Environment, Science &amp; Innovation, brought promising news. While the legal complexities of the situation posed challenges, the authorities were actively exploring options to address the issue. Although details were scarce, one thing was clear – Molly was healthy, happy, and in good spirits.</p> <p>"After contacting the office of the QLD Premier Steven Miles we received a long awaited phone call from someone who works closely with the Director General of the Department of Environment ,Science &amp; Innovation (DESI ) to say we are relieved is an understatement 😁</p> <p>"We weren’t given too much detail but we were assured that DESI are currently looking at options to proceed with what the Premier had suggested &amp; the legalities of the situation is not an easy fix and its a process through legal frameworks . We will be contacted again by the end of the week with the process and updates .</p> <p>"We asked how Molly was ? We were told he was healthy , happy and in good spirits . We weren’t told of his location to protect his safety .</p> <p>"Stay positive , keep focused on the best outcome and NEVER give up on this noisy little magpie ❤"</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C5QG7zFpusz/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C5QG7zFpusz/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Peggyandmolly (@peggyandmolly)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The couple's determination, coupled with the outpouring of support from their community, has helped Juliette and Reece remain focused on the best possible outcome, refusing to give up on their "noisy little magpie".</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Family & Pets

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"I have some very big news": Today host announces shock resignation

<p>In a shock announcement on Friday morning, beloved <em>Today </em>show presenter Brooke Boney revealed that she will be bidding farewell to the morning program.</p> <p>Boney, known for her vibrant presence and insightful reporting, has been an integral part of the show since 2019, captivating audiences with her charisma and professionalism. However, her journey is about to take a new turn as she embarks on a remarkable academic pursuit at Oxford University.</p> <p>“Guys, I have some very big news for you this morning," Boney said to her co-hosts on the panel. "I’ve been offered a place at Oxford University later this year, which means I’ll be leaving the show after the Olympics</p> <p>“I don’t want to go into too much right now, because there’ll be plenty of time for goodbyes and thank yous, but I just wanted to share that good-slash-bad news with you all this morning.</p> <p>“It’s been a dream of mine to be able to study at an overseas university, and it just felt like the right time to take that step.</p> <p>“I’m so grateful to come in here every day and I love you all so much. So it’s made the decision really difficult. But it just means that you’ll all have to plan trips to the UK to come and visit."</p> <p>The news of Boney's departure stirred a wave of emotions among fans and colleagues alike. With tears and heartfelt messages, the tight-knit morning show panel expressed their pride and support for her next endeavour. Co-hosts Karl Stefanovic and Sarah Abo showered Boney with words of encouragement, acknowledging her longstanding dream of studying at an overseas university.</p> <p>“We are very, very proud of you,” Stefanovic said. “So proud of you,” Abo added.</p> <p>Boney's journey to this pivotal moment has been marked by dedication and perseverance. Hailing from the Hunter Region of NSW, she discovered her passion for media at a young age, volunteering at a local community radio station. Her path led her to Sydney, where she pursued an advertising cadetship before delving into university education as a mature-age student. Graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism in 2013, Boney's career trajectory took her to various roles, from political correspondent to newsreader on Triple J's breakfast show.</p> <p>Now, as she prepares to embark on a Masters in Public Policy at Oxford University, Boney reflected on the significance of this opportunity. "I thought if I don't do this now, then I'm probably never going to," she shared.</p> <p>While bidding farewell to the <em>Today</em> show, Boney reassured viewers that her departure is not the end of her journey with Nine. Expressing her desire to explore future collaborations with the network, she remains optimistic about the possibilities that lie ahead.</p> <p>As Brooke Boney prepares to embark on her next chapter, her legacy as a trailblazing journalist and cherished presenter continues to inspire. As she bids adieu to the morning show, audiences eagerly await the next chapter in her remarkable journey.</p> <p><em>Images: Nine</em></p>

TV

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Alan Jones breaks silence with big announcement

<p>Radio veteran Alan Jones has made it clear that he intends to return to the broadcasting scene, despite facing health setbacks and controversies.</p> <p>In a recent video released to the public, the 82-year-old affirmed his commitment to getting back behind the microphone. Jones, a prominent figure in Australian media, addressed the various challenges he has encountered during his hiatus. Last year, he found himself embroiled in a <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/alan-jones-vehemently-denies-bombshell-allegations" target="_blank" rel="noopener">series of allegations</a> reported by Nine Newspapers, which accused him of misconduct involving young men. Firmly denying these allegations, Jones reiterated his stance, labelling the claims as "demonstrably false" and refuting them entirely.</p> <p>“I’m not going to dwell here on the allegations made about me other than I refute them entirely and the inferences associated with them,” Jones said in the video announcement. “But the get-Jones campaign is nothing new in my life.”</p> <p>Despite the legal storm looming over him, Jones departed for London before Christmas, attributing his trip to a promise made to his godson to experience the vibrant theatre scene of London's West End.</p> <p>Dispelling speculations about the purpose of his journey, Jones clarified that his visit to London was not aimed at seeking assistance from his protégé Jake Thrupp, who was reportedly in Bali during most of Jones' stay. Instead, Jones expressed his eagerness to resume his broadcasting endeavours, particularly through the online platform ADH TV, with plans initially set for February of this year.</p> <p>However, unforeseen health issues have posed significant hurdles to Jones' plans for a swift return. Admitting to grappling with persistent health concerns, including "traumatic pain", Jones disclosed that he had been delaying necessary medical intervention. “I have every intention of returning to broadcasting eventually, it is what I do,” he said. “My work has been my life. I could have retired but as I’ve often said ‘if you stop, you drop’.”</p> <p>Recent images capturing him using a walking stick underscored the severity of his condition, prompting him to confront the reality of his physical limitations.</p> <p>Jones candidly shared his health prognosis, revealing that his condition had been assessed as "poor" by medical professionals. Advised to prioritise his well-being, he acknowledged the necessity of addressing his health before resuming his professional duties.</p> <p>“I have suffered no mental ageing," he said, "but I am living with two choices - constant pain where painkillers become totally ineffective or powerful medication with side effects including loss of agility and movement and erratic sleep.”</p> <p><em>Images: Getty</em></p>

Retirement Life

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Virgin Australia announces big news for pet owners

<p>Virgin Australia has made a major announcement for pet owners who worried about leaving their furry friends at home when they travel. </p> <p>Outgoing Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka announced on Thursday that they will be the first Australian airline to let small animals travel in the cabin. </p> <p>The revolutionary move is subject to regulatory approval, but if it gets through, Virgin will launch the pet flights on specific domestic routes within the next 12 months.</p> <p>Only small animals will be allowed to travel under the new rules, with specific rows on pet flights reserved for those travelling with their small dogs and cats. </p> <p>They will also be required to be held in a pet carrier under the seat in front of the owner for the duration of the flight, and will not be able to roam around freely or sit on people’s laps for the entirety of the journey.</p> <p>“Overwhelmingly, our guests tell us they want to travel with their pets, and we are now on a journey to make that a reality. It’s something that commonly happens overseas and is proven to work well,” Hrdlicka said.</p> <p>“Almost 70 per cent of Australian households have a pet, so this announcement is really significant for a large proportion of the country."</p> <p>“It’s also a great thing for pet-friendly accommodation providers who will benefit greatly from increased connectivity and the ease for travellers to fly with their pets. It really will be a whole new economy for pet travel in Australia.”</p> <p>This change will not affect existing arrangements for approved service animals, and passengers travelling with larger pets could still pay for them to be transported as cargo.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Virgin Australia</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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“I’ve got to change this”: The one big fix Robert Irwin is bringing to the jungle

<p>Robert Irwin has shared the one big change he insisted on after he joined the cast of <em>I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!</em></p> <p>The wildlife warrior spoke to Kyle and Jackie O about how he demanded for the show to ditch the eating of native animals for challenges. </p> <p>In past seasons, the show has used body parts of native African animals in challenges for contestants to eat in exchange for prizes and advantages. </p> <p>After agreeing to host the show alongside Julia Morris, the 20-year-old insisted the rule was changed. </p> <p>“The one thing that I was like, ‘Mmm, I’ve got to change this’, was eating the African wildlife…I’m a conservationist at heart,” he said on Tuesday morning when dropping by <em>The Kyle &amp; Jackie O Show</em>.</p> <p>“They have changed it so we’re just doing the cow, and the chicken, and the fish, and the cockroach,” he revealed of the change of challenge menu.</p> <p>Morris said she supported her new co-host’s efforts to stop any consumption of African wildlife on the show.</p> <p>“I think what Robert’s been doing is making people think, ‘Do you need it or not?’ Like if you need it, tell me why you need the wildlife in a place like that?” Morris explained.</p> <p>“And if it doesn’t matter and it was just something that was nice in Africa from Series 1, then we don’t need it – just get a cow!”</p> <p>Irwin added, “Africa’s got such amazing wildlife, and it’s about celebrating it”.</p> <p>Elsewhere in the interview, the young conservationist reflected on the time he first visited the South African set of <em>I’m A Celeb</em> when he was just 10 years old alongside his mum Terri and sister Bindi. </p> <p>“I just kind of got dropped in there with my family and spent the day in there and it was awesome. Since then, it’s been on my radar, I’ve been a fan of the show and I just thought it’s such an amazing thing I was awe-struck, I just loved it. Coming back as a host, is the craziest thing,” he said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: KIISFM</em></p>

TV

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Why Barnaby Joyce’s TV diagnosis of insomnia plus sleep apnoea is such a big deal

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/alexander-sweetman-1331085">Alexander Sweetman</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/flinders-university-972">Flinders University</a></em></p> <p>The <a href="https://theconversation.com/view-from-the-hill-how-does-david-littleproud-handle-the-latest-barnaby-joyce-embarrassment-223289">health</a> of Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce is in the news again, this time with a diagnosis of a sleep disorder made <a href="https://www.afr.com/companies/media-and-marketing/barnaby-joyce-to-be-diagnosed-with-a-sleep-disorder-on-live-tv-20240223-p5f79q">while filming</a> a TV documentary.</p> <p>Joyce’s diagnosis of insomnia plus sleep apnoea arose while filming <a href="https://www.sbs.com.au/whats-on/article/australias-sleep-revolution-with-dr-michael-mosley/nuyko305b">Australia’s Sleep Revolution with Dr Michael Mosley</a> in 2023. SBS has confirmed episode three, in which my Flinders University colleagues reveal his sleep disorder, is set to air on March 20.</p> <p>I was not involved in the program and have no knowledge of Joyce’s <a href="https://www.theaustralian.com.au/weekend-australian-magazine/australias-sleep-crisis-has-flinders-university-cracked-the-code-to-a-better-nights-sleep/news-story/d3b82617af33fff82487da2534722733">ongoing health care</a>. But I was part of the research team that in 2017 <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2016.04.004">coined the term COMISA</a> (co-morbid insomnia and sleep apnoea), the official name of Joyce’s on-screen diagnosis. Since then, I’ve led research into this <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2019.01.004">common</a> sleep disorder.</p> <p>Here’s why it’s so important to diagnose and treat it.</p> <h2>What was Joyce’s diagnosis?</h2> <p>People can be diagnosed separately with <a href="https://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/sleep-disorders/insomnia-2">insomnia</a> or <a href="https://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/sleep-disorders/obstructive-sleep-apnoea">sleep apnoea</a>.</p> <p>Insomnia includes frequent difficulties falling asleep at the start of the night or difficulties staying asleep during the night. These can result in daytime fatigue, reduced energy, concentration difficulties and poor mood. Over time, insomnia can start to impact your <a href="https://theconversation.com/insomnia-and-mental-disorders-are-linked-but-exactly-how-is-still-a-mystery-212106">mental health</a> and quality of life.</p> <p>Sleep apnoea (specifically, obstructive sleep apnoea) is when people experience repeated interruptions or pauses in breathing while they sleep. This reduces oxygen levels during sleep, and you can wake up multiple times at night. People with sleep apnoea may be aware of loud snoring, gasping for air when they wake up, or feeling exhausted the next morning. However, not all people have these symptoms, and sleep apnoea can go undiagnosed for years.</p> <p>But in Joyce’s case, both insomnia and sleep apnoea occur at the same time.</p> <p>We’ve known this could happen since <a href="https://doi.org/10.1126/science.181.4102.856">the 1970s</a>, with <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doi/10.1037/0022-006X.67.3.405">evidence growing</a> over <a href="https://doi.org/10.1378/chest.120.6.1923">subsequent decades</a>. Since then, sleep researchers and clinicians around the world have learned more about how <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2019.01.004">common</a> this is, its <a href="https://doi.org/10.1183/13993003.01958-2021">consequences</a> and how best to <a href="https://doi.org/10.1111/jsr.13847">treat it</a>.</p> <h2>How do you know if you have it?</h2> <p>Many people <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleep.2005.08.008">seek help</a> for their sleep problems because of fatigue, exhaustion, physical symptoms, or poor mood during the day.</p> <p>If you think you have insomnia, a GP or sleep specialist can talk to you about your sleep pattern, and might ask you to complete <a href="https://www.sleepprimarycareresources.org.au/insomnia/assessment-questionnaires">brief questionnaires</a> about your sleep and daytime symptoms. You might also be asked to fill in a “sleep diary” for one to two weeks. These will allow a trained clinician to see if you have insomnia.</p> <p>If you or your GP think you may have (or are at risk of having) sleep apnoea, you may be referred for a sleep study. This normally involves sleeping overnight in a sleep clinic where your sleep patterns and breathing are monitored. Alternatively, you might be set up with a recording device to monitor your sleep at home. A trained medical professional, such as a sleep and respiratory physician, will often make the diagnosis.</p> <p><a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2021.101519">Up to 50%</a> of people with sleep apnoea report symptoms of insomnia. About <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2021.101519">30–40%</a> of people with insomnia also have sleep apnoea.</p> <h2>What are the consequences?</h2> <p>Insomnia and sleep apnoea (individually) are associated with reduced <a href="https://theconversation.com/a-short-history-of-insomnia-and-how-we-became-obsessed-with-sleep-211729">sleep quality</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/insomnia-and-mental-disorders-are-linked-but-exactly-how-is-still-a-mystery-212106">mental health</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/health-check-heres-what-you-need-to-know-about-sleep-apnoea-26402">physical health</a>.</p> <p>Importantly, people with both at the same also tend to <a href="https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci9120371">experience</a> worse sleep, daytime function, mental health, physical health and quality of life, compared with people with no sleep disorder.</p> <p>For instance, we know having both conditions comes with an <a href="https://doi.org/10.1111/jsr.13563">increased risk</a> of diseases of the heart.</p> <p><a href="https://doi.org/10.2147/NSS.S379252">In</a> <a href="https://doi.org/10.1183/13993003.01958-2021">three</a> <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleepe.2022.100043">studies</a>, we found people with both insomnia and sleep apnoea have about a 50–70% higher risk of dying early from any cause, compared with people with neither sleep condition. People with insomnia alone and sleep apnoea alone did not have an increased risk of dying early.</p> <p>However, there are effective treatments to reduce these health consequences.</p> <h2>How is it treated?</h2> <p>In general, it is best for people to access evidence-based treatments for both disorders. These treatments vary according to the patient and the severity of their condition.</p> <p>For instance, wearing a <a href="https://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/sleep-disorders/cpap-continuous-positive-airway-pressure">CPAP mask</a> while sleeping improves breathing during sleep and reduces many of the daytime consequences of obstructive sleep apnoea. However, other effective treatments may be recommended based on each person’s symptoms, such as weight management, avoiding sleeping on your back, <a href="https://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/sleep-disorders/oral-appliances-to-treat-snoring-and-obstructive-sleep-apnoea-osa">oral devices</a> (which look a bit like a mouthguard), or surgery.</p> <p>The <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-can-i-get-some-sleep-which-treatments-actually-work-212964">most effective</a> treatment for insomnia is cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia, also known as <a href="https://www.sleepprimarycareresources.org.au/insomnia/cbti">CBTi</a>. About four to eight sessions often lead to improvements in sleep, daytime function and mental health that are maintained for many <a href="https://doi.org/10.1080/16506073.2021.2009019">years</a>. This can be delivered by trained therapists such as psychologists, nurses or GPs, as well as via <a href="https://www.sleepprimarycareresources.org.au/insomnia/cbti/referral-to-digital-cbti-programs">online</a> programs.</p> <p>Last year, we drew together evidence from more than 1,000 people with both conditions. We found CBTi is an <a href="https://doi.org/10.1111/jsr.13847">effective treatment</a> for insomnia in people with treated and untreated sleep apnoea.</p> <h2>New treatments and approaches</h2> <p><a href="https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/frsle.2024.1355468/abstract">We</a> and <a href="https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-022-06753-4">other teams</a> internationally are developing and testing new ways of delivering CBTi.</p> <p>Several groups are testing devices, which <a href="https://doi.org/10.1002%2Flio2.761">stimulate</a> the tongue muscles during sleep, to treat sleep apnoea in people with both disorders.</p> <p>And we’re still working out the best order for patients to access treatments, and the best combination of treatments.</p> <h2>The power of TV</h2> <p>Joyce’s public diagnosis of both insomnia and sleep apnoea will no doubt raise awareness of what we suspect is an underdiagnosed condition.</p> <p>Based on how common insomnia and sleep apnoea are in Australia, we estimate Joyce is one of about <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sleep.2021.03.023">5–10%</a> of Australian adults to have both at the same time.</p> <p>The Conversation contacted Joyce’s spokesperson for comment but did not hear back before deadline.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/224616/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/alexander-sweetman-1331085">Alexander Sweetman</a>, Research Fellow, College of Medicine and Public Health, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/flinders-university-972">Flinders University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-barnaby-joyces-tv-diagnosis-of-insomnia-plus-sleep-apnoea-is-such-a-big-deal-224616">original article</a>.</em></p>

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Derryn Hinch confirms next big career move

<p>Former Senator for Victoria and radio personality Derryn Hinch has revealed that he will be running for Lord Mayor of Melbourne this year. </p> <p>A formal announcement will be made once he has found his deputy candidate. </p> <p>The 80 year-old shock jock told the <em>Herald Sun</em> that he wanted to “get the city back on its feet” and fix problems with the city’s “woke council”.</p> <p>He also told 3AW, the radio show he used to host, that he was planning to run with the slogan “Make Melbourne Magnificent”.</p> <p>“We used to be so proud of this place,” he said. “Let’s do some things that’ll make us proud again.</p> <p>“I’ve been getting hundreds of emails and Facebook posts with a lot of good ideas from people on what they’d like to see changed.”</p> <p>He added that he would reveal further details on his policies later, but has said that one of the things he'd like to change is the graffiti in the city, which he believes “needs to be totally wiped out” and "tough penalties" should be given when people are caught. </p> <p>"I have no illusions … that it’s gonna be hard work,” he said. “I’ll be doing my best to win”.</p> <p>He also said he wanted to investigate if property owned by the city council can be converted into further Melbourne housing.</p> <p>Hinch also said that he is looking for a female running mate who has state or council experience.</p> <p>The shock jock speculated that he would be running against Sally Capp, the current Lord Mayor of Melbourne, who has been in the role of Lord Mayor for two terms over six years, and may run again in October. </p> <p>Hinch has been in journalism for 63 years and moved into politics in 2015. He served as Senator for Victoria from 2016 to 2019, and only dissolved his party last year. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Legal

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The US just returned to the Moon after more than 50 years. How big a deal is it, really?

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/david-flannery-3906">David Flannery</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p>In the few short years since the COVID pandemic changed our world, China, Japan and India have all successfully landed on the Moon.</p> <p>Many more robotic missions have flown past the Moon, entered lunar orbit, or crashed into it in the past five years. This includes <a href="https://www.planetary.org/space-missions/kplo">spacecraft developed by South Korea</a>, <a href="https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2023/04/27/Dubai-s-ruler-announces-new-moon-mission-after-UAE-s-Rashid-Rover-lunar-crash-">the United Arab Emirates</a>, and an <a href="https://www.spaceil.com/">Israeli not-for-profit organisation</a>.</p> <p>Late last week, the American company <a href="https://www.intuitivemachines.com/">Intuitive Machines</a>, in collaboration with NASA, celebrated “America’s return to the Moon” with a successful landing of its Odysseus spacecraft.</p> <p>Recent <a href="https://theconversation.com/change-5-china-launches-sample-return-mission-to-the-moon-is-it-winning-the-new-space-race-150665">Chinese-built sample return missions</a> are far more complex than this project. And didn’t NASA ferry a dozen humans to the Moon back when microwaves were cutting-edge technology? So what is different about this mission developed by a US company?</p> <h2>Back to the Moon</h2> <p>The recent Odysseus landing stands out for two reasons. For starters, this is the first time a US-built spacecraft has landed – not crashed – on the Moon for over 50 years.</p> <p>Secondly, and far more significantly, this is the first time a private company has pulled off a successful delivery of cargo to the Moon’s surface.</p> <p>NASA has lately focused on destinations beyond the Earth–Moon system, including Mars. But with its <a href="https://www.nasa.gov/commercial-lunar-payload-services/">Commercial Lunar Payload Services</a> (CLPS) program, it has also funded US private industry to develop Moon landing concepts, hoping to reduce the delivery costs of lunar payloads and allow NASA engineers to focus on other challenges.</p> <p>Working with NASA, Intuitive Machines selected a <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malapert_(crater)">landing site</a> about 300 kilometres from the lunar south pole. Among other challenges, landing here requires entering a polar orbit around the Moon, which consumes additional fuel.</p> <p>At this latitude, the land is heavily cratered and dotted with long shadows. This makes it challenging for autonomous landing systems to find a safe spot for a touchdown.</p> <p>NASA spent about US$118 million (A$180 million) to land six scientific <a href="https://www.esa.int/Enabling_Support/Space_Engineering_Technology/About_Payload_Systems">payloads</a> on Odysseus. This is relatively cheap. Using low-cost lunar landers, NASA will have an efficient way to test new space hardware that may then be flown on other Moon missions or farther afield.</p> <h2>Ten minutes of silence</h2> <p>One of the technology tests on the Odysseus lander, NASA’s <a href="https://www.nasa.gov/directorates/stmd/impact-story-navigation-doppler-lidar/">Navigation Doppler Lidar experiment</a> or NDL, appears to have proved crucial to the lander’s success.</p> <p>As the lander neared the surface, the company realised its navigation systems had a problem. NASA’s NDL experiment is serendipitously designed to test precision landing techniques for future missions. It seems that at the last second, engineers bodged together a solution that involved feeding necessary data from NDL to the lander.</p> <p>Ten minutes of silence followed before a <a href="https://twitter.com/Int_Machines/status/1760838333851148442">weak signal was detected</a> from Odysseus. Applause thundered through the mission control room. NASA’s administrator released a video congratulating everyone for returning America to the Moon.</p> <p>It has since become clear the lander is not oriented perfectly upright. The solar panels are generating sufficient power and the team is slowly receiving the first images from the surface.</p> <p>However, it’s likely Odysseus <a href="https://www.universetoday.com/165864/odysseus-moon-lander-is-tipped-over-but-still-sending-data/">partially toppled over</a> upon landing. Fortunately, at the time of writing, it seems most of the science payload may yet be deployed as it’s on the side of the lander facing upwards. The unlucky payload element facing downwards <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2024/02/23/world/odysseus-lunar-landing-sideways-scn/index.html">is a privately contributed artwork</a> connected <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2024/02/22/style/jeff-koons-moon-phases-odysseus-landing/index.html">to NFTs</a>.</p> <p>The lander is now likely to survive for at least a week before the Sun sets on the landing site and a dark, frigid lunar night turns it into another museum piece of human technology frozen in the lunar <a href="https://www.britannica.com/science/regolith">regolith</a>.</p> <h2>Win some, lose some</h2> <p>NASA’s commercial approach to stimulating low-cost payload services all but guarantees some failures. But eventually NASA hopes that several commercial launch and landing providers will emerge from the program, along with a few learning experiences.</p> <p>The know-how accumulated at organisations operating hardware in space is at least as important as the development of the hardware itself.</p> <p>The market for commercial lunar payloads remains unclear. Possibly, once the novelty wears off and brands are no longer able to generate buzz by, for example, <a href="https://www.columbia.com/omni-heat-infinity/moon-mission/">sending a piece of outdoor clothing to the Moon</a>, this source of funding may dwindle.</p> <p>However, just as today, civil space agencies and taxpayers will continue to fund space exploration to address shared science goals.</p> <p> </p> <p>Ideally, commercial providers will offer NASA an efficient method for testing key technologies needed for its schedule of upcoming scientific robotic missions, as well as <a href="https://www.nasa.gov/specials/artemis/">human spaceflight in the Artemis program</a>. Australia would also have the opportunity to test hardware at a reduced price.</p> <p>It’s worth noting that US budgetary issues, <a href="https://spacenews.com/nasa-warns-of-very-problematic-space-technology-budget-cuts/">funding cuts</a> and <a href="https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/jpl-workforce-update">subsequent lay-offs</a> do threaten these ambitions.</p> <p>Meanwhile, in Australia, we may have nothing to launch anyway. We continue to spend less <a href="https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_departments/Parliamentary_Library/Budget/reviews/2023-24/ScienceResearch">than the OECD average on scientific research</a>, and only a few Australian universities – who traditionally lead such efforts – <a href="https://business.gov.au/grants-and-programs/moon-to-mars-initiative-demonstrator-mission-grants/grant-recipients">have received funding</a> provided by the Australian Space Agency.</p> <p>If we do support planetary science and space exploration in the future, Australians will need to decide if we want to allocate our limited resources, competing with NASA and US private industry, to supply launch, landing and robotic services to the global space industry.</p> <p>Alternatively, we could leverage these lower-cost payload providers to develop our own scientific space program, and locally developed space technologies associated with benefits to the knowledge economy, education and national security.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/224276/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/david-flannery-3906"><em>David Flannery</em></a><em>, Planetary Scientist, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queensland-university-of-technology-847">Queensland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Intuitive Machines</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-us-just-returned-to-the-moon-after-more-than-50-years-how-big-a-deal-is-it-really-224276">original article</a>.</em></p>

International Travel

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Big W customer gobsmacked over $4000 shipping fee

<p>A Big W customer was only trying to buy an outdoor play set for her kids but got the shock of her life when she saw the "ridiculous" shipping fee that was over three times the cost of the play set. </p> <p>The Singleton mum had added the $1,200 item to her cart while shopping online and was about to check out when she was greeted with a $4,466 shipping fee. </p> <p>"How in God's name can they charge $4,466 for delivery! Big W are slowly losing my vote!" the outraged mum wrote on Facebook, even swearing off the department store for the apparent money grab. </p> <p>According to the Big W website, the play set is sent via Plum Play, a "trusted partner", and not by Big W stores, and because the woman lives in a rural area, she initially believed that was the reason for the extortionate shipping costs. </p> <p>A few other shoppers criticised the high fee. </p> <p>"That is fricken ridiculous!!!! No one would pay that," one said. </p> <p>"Jesus, are you ordering a few pallets of bricks? No way normal merchandise would cost that much to send," another wrote. </p> <p>A few others questioned the weight of the item and where she lived, while others tried to buy the same item and got even higher shipping fees. </p> <p>"It jumped a few grand for a couple of ks for me," one wrote, with the cost of standard delivery for the play set at $7,858. </p> <p>Some reported fees of up to $50,000, but most were $7,000 to $10,000. </p> <p>The department store has addressed the issue and told <em>Yahoo News Australia</em> that an "error on the website" was to blame. </p> <p>They have since corrected the delivery charges which should have been about $100 for the woman's location. </p> <p>"We were made aware of a delivery calculation error on our website which has since been resolved. We apologise for any inconvenience this has caused," a spokesperson told the publication. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Money & Banking

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"Other cities will follow": Big trouble ahead for SUV owners

<p>Paris residents have voted to charge SUVs triple the cost of parking compared to standard sized cars in a bid to tackle air pollution and improve safety. </p> <p>54.6 per cent of residents voted to pass the plan, with the new parking tariffs expected to start in September. </p> <p>The price increase will apply to on-street parking for vehicles with combustion or hybrid engines weighing more than 1.6 tonnes and electric vehicles weighing over two tonnes.</p> <p>The change means that the vehicles will pay €18 (A$29.69) an hour for parking in the centre of Paris, up from €6 (A$9.90), and €12 (A$19.79) an hour in the rest of the city, up from €4 (A$6.60).</p> <p>"Parisians have made a clear choice … other cities will follow,” Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo said. </p> <p>Experts are onboard with the move and believe the Australia should do the same thing. </p> <p>Urban access consultant and author of the book<em> Rethinking Parking</em> David Mepham said that the move could help improve safety as: “SUVs are actually some of the most unsafe vehicles on the road for pedestrians with a fatality rate that is significantly higher than other vehicles.”</p> <p>“The injury and fatality rate should be a concern in highly pedestrianised areas such as city centres.”</p> <p>In 2022 alone, SUV and light commercial vehicles made up 76.8 per cent of car sales, coming in eighth on the top 10 vehicle sales according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries.</p> <p>With spaces in the cities limited, Mepham added: “If you’ve got a larger car you should expect to pay more for that, you should pay for what you use.”</p> <p>Standards Australia has recently proposed to increase the size of off-street parking spaces by 20 centimetres in Australia, from 5.4 metres to 5.6 metres, which would make it easier for larger vehicles to park, but would limit car spaces. </p> <p>Executive director of the Australia Institute, Richard Dennis also said that SUV owners need to face the consequences of owning a larger vehicle. </p> <p>“If we want to drive much bigger cars, are we going to widen all of our city streets, are we going to have less car parking spaces?” he said.</p> <p>“Because if we want to drive these cars we need to own the consequences.”</p> <p>Marion Terrill, an independent transport expert, also agreed that higher parking fees for large vehicles are “absolutely reasonable.”</p> <p>“If you want more of it you can pay more, it’s the same principle as paying for parking at all," she said. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Bride sparks feud for banning her niece from her big day

<p dir="ltr">A bride-to-be has sparked a feud for deciding to ban her sister’s “loud and distracting” toddler from her wedding ceremony, with the bride asking social media users for advice. </p> <p dir="ltr">The bride was only weeks away from her intimate destination wedding, which included a guest list of only a few friends and close family. </p> <p dir="ltr">After being met with a difficult decision, the bride took to Reddit to share how a massive family feud had erupted in the weeks before the big day.</p> <p dir="ltr">“My sister is bringing her one-year-old toddler. The child is more than welcome — she’s part of the family and we want her there as part of the day,” she began.</p> <p dir="ltr">“However, as she’s still very young (and very loud at times), I’ve asked that somebody takes her out during the ceremony if she’s being distracting, shouting and babbling loudly.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“I know that this will probably happen as she’s constantly chatting loudly and is never quiet.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“But it’s only for half an hour and she can be as loud as she likes for the rest of the day.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“I just want everybody to be able to focus on the ceremony and I don’t want the distraction.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The bride said she was worried about sounding selfish, but then admitted that she was allowed to be selfish on her big day, and wanted all eyes on her and the groom.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We want everyone to be able to enjoy them and, to be honest, we want the guests’ attention focused on us,” she said.</p> <p dir="ltr">However, after the bride told her sister of the plans, things didn’t go down well. </p> <p dir="ltr">“My sister has told me I’m being an a****** for ‘excluding’ my niece from the ceremony and therefore by default ‘excluding’ my brother-in-law who will be the one to take her out,” the bride said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“She says that I’m asking him and the one-year-old to go all that way just for the evening meal as they will miss the ceremony and that the toddler will most likely miss that too as it will be after bedtime.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“I’ve told her that there’s a whole afternoon of relaxing things going on — photos, cake, a little walk outside and late lunch that they will be part of but apparently she’s still really annoyed with me.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The bride says her sister is now “threatening” to attend the wedding alone, leaving her partner and their daughter at home.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We’ve called her bluff and said if that’s what she wants to do then we understand,” she said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“To be honest, she’s p***ing us off so much that we’d be fine with all three of them not coming at this point.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“I don’t think that I’m asking anything unreasonable.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“All I want is a peaceful, relaxed ceremony where we can all focus on what’s going on without a toddler babbling away.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Also, to be honest, even if this WAS an unreasonable ask, surely as it’s my wedding day then it’s up to me? Isn’t it the one day of my life when I can do literally anything I want?”</p> <p dir="ltr">The post was quickly met with hundreds of comments, with most people flocking to the bride’s defence. </p> <p dir="ltr">One person wrote, “This is basic event etiquette, but it seems like sis cannot be relied on to follow basic etiquette - or even asked to do so without herself acting like a toddler.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Another suggested: “Removing a disruptive baby from a formal event would be normal etiquette, but if you specifically had to ask in advance, I’ll guess she’s got a history of not doing so.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“Your wedding, your rules. You could have gone completely child-free, all you asked was for the common courtesy of taking her outside if she got noisy.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p>

Family & Pets

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Big Bang Theory star reveals two major family announcements

<p>Johnny Galecki has dropped two huge announcements in his latest interview - he secretly married partner Morgan Galecki and they have welcomed their first child together.</p> <p>The <em>Big Bang Theory </em>star, 48, confirmed the news to <em>Architectural Digest</em>, as he was giving them a tour of his gothic-style Tennessee mansion. </p> <p>According to the publication, Morgan was pregnant at the time of the photoshoot, despite her bump not being quite obvious in photos. </p> <p>The pair welcomed their daughter, Oona Evelena, shortly after. Oona is the pair's first child together, but the actor also shares son Orbison, four, with his ex Alaina Meyer.</p> <p>It remains unclear how long the pair have been dating, but he reportedly split from ex Meyer in November 2020.</p> <p>The actor shared a few photos from the shoot on Instagram, and said he would treasure the piece on their family home. </p> <p>"We will place it in our family time capsule and cherish it for many, many years," he wrote in the caption. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C3D4tgXPt35/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C3D4tgXPt35/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Johnny Galecki (@sanctionedjohnnygalecki)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Galecki also opened up on why he decided to move to Tennessee after living in Los Angeles for 30  years. </p> <p>"I never felt like much of an Angeleno," he told <em>Architectural Digest</em>. </p> <p>"And I did try. I say that with sadness, not with snobbery. Thirty years is just a very long time to live in a city that you're not all that comfortable in."</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p> <p> </p>

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Amid allegations of price gouging, it’s time for big supermarkets to come clean on how they price their products

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/sanjoy-paul-1141384">Sanjoy Paul</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-technology-sydney-936">University of Technology Sydney</a></em></p> <p>With inflation driving up the cost of living, many are dreading not just the hassle of a big grocery shop, but also the bruising cost.</p> <p>But while Australians struggle with their budget and spending, several major supermarkets made large profits in 2022–23. Coles and Woolworths, for example, made net profits of <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/business/2023/aug/23/woolworths-posts-162bn-profit-with-dramatic-lift-in-margins-despite-cost-of-living-crisis">A$1.1 billion and A$1.62 billion</a>, respectively.</p> <p><a href="https://www.news.com.au/finance/money/costs/coles-and-woolworths-chief-executives-to-face-senate-inquiry-into-supermarket-price-hikes/news-story/0f74b6d4cac20ee65b818642f4f554ba">Allegations of price gouging</a> by Australian supermarkets have even led to a <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-12-03/greens-move-to-establish-senate-inquiry-into-supermarkets/103179656">Senate inquiry</a> into supermarket pricing.</p> <p>Coles chief executive Leah Weckert has <a href="https://www.colesgroup.com.au/media-releases/?page=coles-group-statement-on-senate-inquiry-into-supermarket-prices">promised</a> to appear at the inquiry, saying the company “works hard to keep prices affordable for Australian households […]” and is ready to “engage in an informed discussion on the factors that influence supermarket pricing.”</p> <p>Woolworths Group chief executive Brad Banducci, meanwhile, <a href="https://www.woolworthsgroup.com.au/au/en/media/latest-news/2023/woolworths-group-confirms-ceo-will-appear-at-senate-inquiry-on-s.html">said</a> he welcomes the chance to explain to the Senate “how we are working to balance the needs of our customers, our team and our suppliers in the context of economy-wide inflationary pressure”.</p> <p>But why wait until a Senate inquiry to explain all that? There’s an opportunity <em>now</em> for the big supermarkets to be more transparent about how they decide what prices to put on products.</p> <h2>Allegations of price gouging</h2> <p>It’s not just <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-12-03/greens-move-to-establish-senate-inquiry-into-supermarkets/103179656">politicians</a> and <a href="https://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/woolworths-photo-exposes-everything-wrong-with-supermarkets-002726485.html">customers</a> complaining about supermarket prices.</p> <p>Australian farmers have also accused Coles and Woolworths of price gouging for <a href="https://www.news.com.au/finance/business/retail/aussie-farmer-shipping-beautiful-melons-to-japan-rather-than-deal-with-coles-and-woolworths/news-story/bd685cd91f934f31c02c764097f496ae">fruits and vegetables</a>, claiming supermarkets profit too much from their crops.</p> <p>The National Farmers’ Federation has <a href="https://www.freshplaza.com/oceania/article/9583132/farmers-call-for-price-transparency-beyond-supermarket-inquiry/">called</a> for greater transparency from the supermarkets on how they decide prices.</p> <p>A recent <a href="https://www.freshplaza.com/oceania/article/9583132/farmers-call-for-price-transparency-beyond-supermarket-inquiry/">survey</a> by AUSVEG (the peak industry body for the Australian vegetable and potato industries) found 34% of vegetable growers are considering leaving the industry in the next 12 months as they <a href="https://www.news.com.au/finance/business/retail/aussie-farmer-shipping-beautiful-melons-to-japan-rather-than-deal-with-coles-and-woolworths/news-story/bd685cd91f934f31c02c764097f496ae">struggle</a> to turn a profit.</p> <p>When asked about calls for more transparent pricing, a Woolworths spokesperson told The Conversation:</p> <blockquote> <p>We publish both our average gross margin and EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) margin transparently in our public financial reports.</p> <p>Supply chain costs are different for every product and they are constantly fluctuating, as are our buying costs in the case of fresh food like fruit and vegetables.</p> <p>Shoppers are very savvy. We operate in a highly competitive industry and we know our customers will – and do – shop around to find the best value.</p> <p>As we start to see the rate of inflation ease, we will continue to focus on delivering savings to our customers.</p> </blockquote> <p>Coles was also contacted for comment but did not reply before publication deadline.</p> <h2>Factoring in many costs</h2> <p>When a retailer buys products from their suppliers, it involves a supply chain that includes supply, manufacturing, transportation and distribution, warehouse and storage.</p> <p>There are several costs – such as product costs, transportation fees, labour, rent, inventory and more – involved at every step of the process.</p> <p>The supermarket must factor in all costs, as well as its profit margin, when it sets the selling price for a product.</p> <p>Organisations usually have these cost breakdowns as part of their internal decision-making – but they don’t typically disclose these calculations to their customers.</p> <h2>Not disclosing the cost breakdowns</h2> <p>The problem for supermarkets is that when they don’t disclose details such as their buying price or supply chain costs, it can contribute to anger among customers and suppliers.</p> <p>Apple and Pear Australia Limited – the national peak industry body for apple and pear growers – has <a href="https://apal.org.au/retailers-need-to-demonstrate-greater-price-transparency/">called for</a> retailers to demonstrate greater price transparency, saying, “frustration at the behaviour of the major retailers has again angered many growers”.</p> <p>Of course, supermarkets use several pricing strategies to win customer support – such as locking in prices for a certain period of time, everyday low prices on key products, specials, price-matching and discounts.</p> <p>Supermarkets spend millions of dollars on these price-related advertisements, but perhaps they would get more community support by simply disclosing cost breakdowns on their websites and in-store to show their commitment to transparent and fair pricing.</p> <h2>Transparent and fair pricing</h2> <p>Research shows price transparency helps businesses build trust with their <a href="https://fastercapital.com/content/The-Importance-of-Price-Transparency-in-Pricing-Psychology.html">customers</a>.</p> <p>Many major retailers already have this information for internal decision-making, so could display this online and in stores.</p> <p>Yes, prices change constantly due to factors outside their control – such as fuel prices, shipping problems or even supply chain issues linked to global conflict. But being more open with customers about these issues could help repair relationships and their public image.</p> <p>Perhaps there may even be a role for government, which could collaborate with supermarkets and retailers to develop policies for transparent and fair pricing.</p> <p>Everyday Australians deserve to be treated fairly and given the information they need about how major supermarkets price their products, so they can make informed decisions at the checkout.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/219316/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/sanjoy-paul-1141384"><em>Sanjoy Paul</em></a><em>, Associate Professor, UTS Business School, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-technology-sydney-936">University of Technology Sydney</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/amid-allegations-of-price-gouging-its-time-for-big-supermarkets-to-come-clean-on-how-they-price-their-products-219316">original article</a>.</em></p>

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One humble Sydney pub's big plans for Princess Mary's coronation

<p>A pub in Sydney has shared their plans to celebrate Crown Princess Mary's coronation as she ascends to the Danish throne. </p> <p>The Slip Inn, a Merivale-owned pub near Sydney's Darling Harbour, was where Princess Mary met Denmark's Prince Frederik in 2000 during the Olympic Games. </p> <p>Now, the Aussie princess is set to become Queen of Denmark following the shock announcement of the abdication of Queen Margrethe, who announced she will be handing the throne to her son as of January 14th. </p> <p>In celebration of the Princess Mary <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/crown-princess-mary-set-to-make-history" target="_blank" rel="noopener">making history</a> as the first Aussie to ever hold the title of Queen Consort, the Slip Inn have shared their plans for coronation day. </p> <p>The pub will be honouring the occasion with a Danish themed menu and decorations ahead of a busy weekend expected to attract tourists and royal punters.</p> <p>The Slip Inn is closed on Sunday, so there will be no live broadcast of the official proclamation ceremony taking place in Copenhagen, however the pub couldn’t let the day pass without paying tribute to the couple.</p> <p>Danish flags will fly throughout the venue, while Daisies, the national flower of Denmark, will adorn the venue and King and Queen thrones have been installed for people to pose on and take photos with.</p> <p>A special menu will feature hotdogs and a Scandinavian inspired cocktail titled “There’s Something About Mary”. </p> <p>The Danish-inspired menu will run at The Slip Inn for the whole month of January to celebrate the new King and Queen. </p> <p>Chief operating officer at Laundy Hotels Justin Tynan said the Sussex St pub was “the place to be” in Sydney’s thriving night-life scene of the time, and soon became the centre of royal attention after the couple disclosed it as their meeting place.</p> <p>“I think I did about 50 live crosses around the world when the news broke,” he said of the time.</p> <p>“The Danish flag still hangs out the front of the building but back in the day we put Carlsberg beer on, we put Danish food on the menu, we had buses turning up with Danish tourists just wanting to see exactly where they were.”</p> <p>“It was absolutely crazy.” </p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

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Qantas' big move ahead of record-breaking holiday season

<p>As the festive season approaches, Qantas is gearing up for its busiest Christmas holiday period in years. The airline has taken proactive measures to handle the anticipated surge in passenger numbers, with an additional boost to its international cabin crew.</p> <p>More than 8.5 million passengers are expected to fly on Qantas and Jetstar services in December and January, marking a significant increase from the previous year – and the most passengers since the 2019-20 festive season.</p> <p>To meet the demands of the busy holiday season, Qantas has expanded its international cabin crew team with the addition of 16 new faces. These recruits, having completed an eight-week intensive training program, are set to embark on their first flights just in time for the peak travel period. The new recruits will be contributing to flights destined for key international locations such as Japan (Narita), Hong Kong, and Singapore.</p> <p>Phil Capps, Qantas executive manager for product and service, emphasised the airline's commitment to investing in staff training across all departments, including ground staff and cabin crew. The significant recruitment efforts in 2023, with 991 new international cabin crew and 394 new domestic cabin crew, reflect Qantas's dedication to providing exceptional service during the holiday season and beyond.</p> <p>To ensure operational readiness, Qantas has brought forward maintenance on its aircraft, and up to 13 planes will be on standby as operational spares. The airline has also made a substantial boost to reserve staff to address unexpected sick leave situations. Over the past 12 months, almost 3,300 additional operational employees, including cabin crew, pilots, engineers, and airport customer service staff, have been recruited to enhance overall efficiency.</p> <p>As part of the preparations for the busy travel period, Qantas and Jetstar are urging travellers to check-in online for domestic flights, arrive ahead of schedule, and adhere to baggage limits. The airlines emphasised that bringing excess carry-on baggage could lead to delays and urged passengers to be respectful and patient during the holiday rush. Additionally, Qantas warned about potential delays and cancellations due to bad weather and air traffic control issues.</p> <p><em>Image: Qantas</em></p>

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