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National Radio Midday Bulletin

GM Commission – Lamb Tariffs – Petrol Price Drops – Drug Advertising – Baby Food Withdrawn – Waste Dumping – Port Chalmers Protest – Fiji Coup Men Bailed – US Spy Gets 20 Years – US Election Highway Patrol – Bad Teachers – Nice Meeting – British Storm Warning

- GM COMMISSION: Another food producer has said no to Genetic Engineering. Comvita, one of New Zealand’s biggest producers of honey products, says genetic engineering is a threat to New Zealand’s image. Speaking to the Royal Commission on Genetic Engineering, the Chairman of the Board of Comvita said his company trades on New Zealand’s clean, green image internationally, and genetic modification threatens that.

- LAMB TARIFFS: The meat board has welcomed the final ruling by the World Trade Organisation backing New Zealand’s complaint against US tariffs on New Zealand and Australian lamb.

- PETROL PRICE DROPS: Challenge, who led yesterday’s petrol price drops only to be trumped by Shell with a 10c per litre drop, says the price cuts should be sustainable, although they have sliced profit margins wafer thin.

- DRUG ADVERTISING: Pharmaceutical drug companies have been told they must get their house in order if they want to continue to be able to self regulate the direct advertising of prescription drugs. The head of the Consumer’s Institute, David Russell, told industry representatives that they had played fast and loose with the public with early advertising.

- BABY FOOD WITHDRAWN: The Commerce Commission says Abbott laboratories Ltd. has voluntary withdrawn a soy infant formula from shelves. The Commission started an investigation into a complaint about the labelling of the product, which said it was the first choice of doctors for feeding complications.

- WASTE DUMPING: New levies are being proposed for people dumping waste as the Government considers a report on ways to reduce the amount of waste generated.

- PORT CHALMERS PROTEST: About 150 picketers remain at Port Chalmers after meeting log carrier, Crimson Forest, when it arrived at 6am. The picket is part of a protest against Carter Holt Harvey’s move to contract Mainland Stevedoring to load it’s ships in South Island ports.

- FIJI COUP MEN BAILED: The Fiji army is unhappy with the decision to free on bail four men involved with the May coup. Fiji’s Chief Magistrate bailed the men after treason charges against them were dropped. The military believes no one implicated in the coup should be freed.

- US SPY GETS 20 YEARS: The United States is demanding the release of an American businessman who has been sentenced to 20 years in a Russian labour camp for spying.

- US ELECTION: The US Presidential election continues to be bogged down in several state courts in Florida. Democrat candidate Al Gore says he is getting on with his duties as Vice President and Republican George W. Bush says he is getting on with the work of setting up a transition.

- HIGHWAY PATROL: Police say rising costs mean new highway patrol cars won’t be equipped with portable radios, and that raises safety issues.

- BAD TEACHERS: The departing Chief Executive of the Education Review Office says there are still a lot of teachers who are in the wrong profession.

- NICE MEETING: Thousands of trade unionists and people opposed to globalisation have demonstrated in the French city of Nice on the eve of what is describes as the most important European Union meeting in a decade.

- BRITISH STORM WARNING: The British Meteorological office has issued a warning of severe weather to hit the British Isles.

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