A government plea for people to eat less in a bid to battle the growing obesity crisis has been widely criticised by the public and the food industry.Launching a new “ambition” to bring down England’s obesity levels by 2020 yesterday, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley stressed he was not in favour of regulating the food and drink industry.However, the plea has been labelled “woefully inadequate” by Which? and was slammed by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver as “patronising”.Overall, Britons should be eating five billion fewer calories a day than at present, he added. The new obesity strategy says that, on average, adults are exceeding their recommended calorie intake by 10%. Lansley said government and business had a role to play, but people also needed to take responsibility for their own health.He insisted that “more progress has been made more quickly” through the Responsibility Deal with food and drink manufacturers than would have been managed through legislation. And he said the government would continue to “look at the evidence” on measures such as a “fat tax” on fatty foods, something Prime Minister David Cameron has said he would consider.More than 60% of adults in England and a third of 10 and 11-year-olds are obese. Mr Lansley said he would like to see school and work canteens carrying nutritional information about the calories in meals.Which? executive director Richard Lloyd described the strategy as “woefully inadequate”, adding: “Almost a quarter of the population is now obese, and the cost to the NHS and the wider economy is rapidly rising. The Government calls on people to cut down the calories they eat, but isn’t giving them the tools to do so.”However, the move for a lighter touch on legislation was welcomed by the Food and Drink Federation.Terry Jones, FDF director of communications, said: “We are pleased to see the Government taking a holistic approach to tackling the complex problem of obesity. The framework’s clear focus and defined roles for a wide range of players, including government, individuals, businesses and the health service at both a national and local level recognises that this is everybody’s business.“Food manufacturers have a great track record of positive contributions to improving public health, including clear labelling and reformulation of products, to help consumers make healthy choices. Following the announcement today, we are committed to continuing to work in partnership with the Department of Health and others through the Public Health Responsibility Deal to play our part in supporting people to achieve an appropriate calorie intake and a healthy lifestyle.”
A new project has been announced to reduce the potential environmental impact of future mining by making exploration for deep-seafloor mineral deposits much more effective. ‘Project ULTRA’ has been funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), and will be led by Professor Bramley Murton at the National Oceanography Centre (NOC).Deep-seafloor mineral deposits can provide vital new metals for emerging technologies, including those that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Many deposits were formed by hot springs on the seafloor and the vast majority of these now lie under a blanket of marine sediment. The big question facing geologists is whether these buried mineral deposits still contain valuable metals – have the minerals dissolved since they formed thousands of years ago beneath the Earth’s crust, or become even more concentrated?‘Project ULTRA’ will address these questions using a robotic drilling rig to drill the deposits – this will also generate the first three dimensional image of the deposits, using scientific instruments on the surrounding seafloor to listen to vibrations from the drill as it bores through the seafloor. The boreholes will then be sealed and returned to a year later, when fluids will be tapped-off from the plugs to test for reactions deep inside the deposit, NOC explained.The rock core taken by the drill, and these fluid samples, will reveal the composition and structure of these types of mineral deposit, their sub-seafloor fluid pathways, alteration of the host rock, and the preservation processes of their ore minerals.By using this information to identify where the most valuable metals are located in the deposit, Project ULTRA will help ensure any future exploitation would be able to minimize the disturbance to the seafloor and its surrounding environment.This project forms part of the NOC’s ongoing research into seafloor resources and is a collaboration with the British Geological Survey (BGS), the Universities of Southampton, Cardiff and Leeds, Memorial University in Canada, as well as Oxford Museum, GEOMAR, Nautilus Minerals, VNIIOkeangeologia from Russia, and SMD.
Gaming headset and audio accessory brand Turtle Beach Corporation has expanded its global esports reach with today’s announcement of a new partnership with Chinese CS:GO outfit Eclipse Club.Henceforth, Eclipse will exclusively use Turtle Beach’s new Elite Pro – PC Edition as their official gaming headset and will make their first partnership appearance to meet fans at the Turtle Beach booth at ChinaJoy 2017 in Shanghai on July 27-28, 2017. Juergen Stark, Turtle BeachThe team has some pedigree in China as it was founded by Alex Bian Zhengwei who is acknowledged as the first Counter Strike player in the country. Zhengwei brought together top pro gaming teams All Gamers and Band of Fire under new Eclipse Club banner earlier this year. Juergen Stark, CEO, Turtle Beach Corporation noted: “China is the biggest game market in the world with PC gaming counting for more than half of the total gaming audience, and it’s an honor for us to partner with the dynamic Eclipse team, its legendary founder, and their up-and-coming players to highlight the importance of audio to gamers in China. “We look forward to working with Eclipse and sharing and learning from their insights using our Elite Pro – PC Edition as we look to broaden our reach even further in the PC gaming space in the future.”Alex Bian Zhengwei, World champion EEWC player and the Founder and Head Coach of Eclipse Club commented: “It’s a privilege to be working with a global leader in gaming audio when it comes to building our team on the best foundation possible. ”When we play, precision is paramount and we need the very best tools in order to win, and using Turtle Beach’s Turtle Beach’s Elite Pro – PC Edition headsets ensures we have the best audio gear for our prep and competitions.”Esports Insider says: As Turtle Beach’s Stark noted, China accounts for the largest gaming market in the world with PC gaming accounting for over half of this audience. As such establishing an exclusive partnership with the CS team run by one of the game’s most famous players in the country is a strong commercial deal for the company.