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Nestle chocolate and biscuits in the UK to be made from sustainable cocoa

The entire range of Nestle chocolates and biscuits sold in the UK and Ireland will be made entirely from sustainable cocoa from the new year.

Managing director of the York-based company Andrew McIver said Nestle is the first major confectionery company in this country to achieve the "landmark milestone".

Consumers in the UK can enjoy their favourite products with the confidence that they are made with cocoa that comes from 100% certified sustainable source.

– Andrew McIver, Nestle


Asda avoids 'black Friday' scramble

Leeds-based Asda will not take part in the so called 'black Friday' retail extravaganza today, after the promotion caused chaos in store last year.

Shoppers scrambled for goods this time last year Credit: ITV

It released this statement on its website:

''After listening to you, our customer, this year we have chosen not to take part in just one day of deals as part of the Black Friday flash sales. Instead we're investing in a range of...offers, which are available to you in the lead up to Christmas and into the New Year.''

– Asda spokesman

How to bag yourself a Black Friday bargain

Today is Black Friday - with spending predicted to top £1 billion over the course of the day. It's a trend that has made its way over to the UK from America and last year there were scenes of chaos with some shoppers literally fighting each other to grab themselves a bargain.

Julia Bartham has been finding out how to make sure you get the best bargains ..... peacefully!


Thomas Cook reveals profits for first time in five years

Making a profit

Beleaguered holiday firm Thomas Cook - heavily criticised following the deaths of two children from Wakefield on a holiday in Corfu - has posted its first annual bottom line profit for five years.

This is despite a £130 million sales hit from the Tunisian beach and hotel terrorist attacks in June.

The group said it had been a year of "considerable challenges" after coming under fire for its handling of the deaths of Bobby and Christ Shepherd. They died after being overcome from fumes from a faulty boiler at their holiday home on Corfu.

Christi and Bobby Shepherd

Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said the group had "confronted its mistakes" following the deaths of the children.

Thomas Cook posted profits after tax of £19 million - its first positive profit after tax since 2010 - while underlying earnings rose 11% to £310 million. But it said the suspension of holidays to Tunisia cost the group £130 million in sales, with underlying earnings impacted by around £22 million.

The group said the new financial year had got off to a good start despite cancelling its flights to Sharm-El-Sheikh in Egypt after the downing of a Russian passenger plane last month, while Tunisia holidays also remain suspended for most markets.

Union: Tax credit cuts could cost region over £300m

The economy in Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire could lose £332m a year if planned tax credit cuts go ahead, according to the trade union Unison.

A plan to scrap tax credits was blocked in the House of Lords Credit: PA

More than a quarter of a million working families in the region receive tax credits from the government.

Chancellor George Osborne is set to announce his autumn spending review later today.

Tesco distribution site workers to vote on strike action in Doncaster

Hundreds of drivers and warehouse workers at a Tesco distribution site in Doncaster are to be balloted for strike action in a row over pay.

Workers will vote on strike action next week Credit: PA

Unite said 700 of its members in Belfast and Doncaster will vote next week after rejecting a two-year offer of 0% this year and 1.5% in 2016.

Our members have been working very hard to get Tesco to the position where the company can announce promising financial results and be confident that it has turned the corner of the challenges of recent years. We don't want favours from the company but we believe that the current offer is far below what it can afford and what our members deserve. Unite members don't want to disrupt anyone's Christmas shopping but without a proper pay increase thousands of workers will not be able to enjoy their own Christmas in the way they deserve. We urge Tesco to revise its pitiful pay offer and avoid potential industrial action in the run up to Christmas.

– National officer Adrian Jones

Shop front grant scheme launched in East Lindsey

Independent shops in East Lindsey can now get a helping hand from the local council if they want to improve their shop fronts.

East Lindsey District Council has launched a shop front grant scheme which aims to improve the appearance of shop frontages and increase the number of shoppers on high streets.

Retailers will be able to apply for money to fund projects including repairs and restoration of historic features.

East Lindsey is fortunate to have so many independent retailers who create a unique and special shopping environment. The Council is aware that the appearance of a High Street makes a real different to the overall shopping experience and through the Shop Front Grant Scheme the Council wants to give businesses that do have an aspiration to improve their shop frontages a financial helping hand. The Council truly values the District’s independent retailers and this Grant Scheme could be of great benefit to many businesses.

– Cllr Adam Grist
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