The Czech Agriculture and Food Inspection Authority began inspections on Friday of vegetables imported from Spain in response to the outbreak of the E.coli bacteria. Eight people have died in Germany of the infection which has spread to several other countries. A spokesman for the Czech food and drink watchdog said inspections will go on for at least a week; first results should be known by Monday. Meanwhile, a number of retailers, including Tesco and Kaufland, have pulled Spanish cucumbers, tomatoes and other produce off their shelves.
An insolvency court has approved the declaration of bankruptcy on the troubled lottery firm Sazka, as proposed at Friday’s meeting of the company’s creditors. The decision came after the court heard claims lodged against Sazka worth of around 41.1 billion crowns, or nearly 2.4 billion US dollars. Sazka’s biggest creditors, the financial groups PPF and KKCG, said they would like the firm to continue its lottery and betting business on condition the company’s current management including CEO Aleš Hušák is replaced. The country’s oldest and largest lottery operator got into problems over a construction of a multi-billion sports arena in Prague. In March, it was declared insolvent..
A court in Prague on Thursday adjourned hearing claims lodged against the embattled lottery firm Sazka. More than 2,000 claims against Sazka have been registered, amounting to over 41 billion crowns, or over 2.3 billion US dollars. However, Sazka bankruptcy trustee only recognized claims worth around 15 billion. After the court heard claims higher than 300,000 crowns, the session was adjourned until Friday. The Czech Finance Ministry suspended Sazka’s lottery licence earlier this month after the firm failed to pay the winnings. Sazka got into financial problems after it spent billions of crowns on constructing a multi-purpose arena in the capital.
Poor retired people with passive lifestyle form the largest single segment of the Czech population, according to new survey by the country’s association of marketing agencies released on Thursday. There are around one million of them in the country, or 13 percent of the population. Some 750,000 retired people enjoy active lifestyles and sufficient financial means, while another 700,000 Czechs fall into the category of people “waiting for retirement”. The survey divided the Czech population into ten categories according to their quality of life. It also found that some 10 percent of Czechs have sufficient financial resources; they tend to be more educated and live in bigger cities. Another 9 percent of the population fell into the category of “people without perspective” who are mostly unemployed and rely on state welfare.
The Czech company Linet, which produces hospital beds and other professional health care products, has secured a 42 million crown (1.5 million British pounds) tender in Great Britain, the weekly Ekonom reported on Wednesday. The company has a five-year contract with several hospitals to which it will provide beds as well as disinfecting services for the beds. Linet exports its products to 90 countries worldwide. The company is among the four biggest producers of hospital beds internationally.
Around 23 percent of Czech managers consider bribery a justifiable way of gaining and keeping contracts, according to a new Europe-wide poll by the Ernst&Young firm released on Tuesday. More than 50 percent of those polled also said unethical practices were acceptable to meet the company’s financial goals under difficult economic circumstances. Some 5 percent of managers who took part in the survey said they were willing to lie about their company’s performance in order not to undermine its growth. The results put Czechs in the middle of 25 European nations where the poll was conducted, along with Spaniards. The poll suggested that the European average was 18 percent.
According to a fresh survey by the Slovakian consumers’ association, international food producers unload lower-quality products on post-communist states, including the Czech Republic. The association’s director said that tests reveal that products in newer EU member states are of lower quality than those on supermarket shelves in older EU member states, with the worst results found in Bulgaria. He added that companies may choose to unload lower-quality products on those markets because they expect consumers there to be more likely to accept poorer quality.
The Muller company, a multinational producer of dairy products, is pulling its milk-rice pudding off the shelves after slivers of glass were found in some of the products sold. The Czech Food Inspection Office said it had received a fast-alert warning late Friday. The warning concerns milk-rice with cinnamon and cherry flavour, as well as the natural variety with an expiry date May 23rd. Over twelve thousand cases of these puddings were imported to the Czech Republic and have been put on sale.
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