* An international (but excluding Africa) Hotel WiFi quality survey found that hotels in Europe are more likely to offer quality WiFi, but American hotels are more likely to offer it for free. Asia is most likely to offer WiFi, but least likely to not charge for it. Stockholm, Budapest, and Tokyo offer the best quality WiFi, but hotels in Istanbul, Paris, and Stockholm are most likely to offer it for free.
* Grootbos Nature Reserve has been nominated for its sustainable tourism work at the World Travel and Tourism Council 2015 Continue reading →
* A host of South African companies is participating in the South Africa-China Expos next week, 51 local companies participating in the expos in five Chinese cities. Their participation is supported by the Department of Trade and Industry, so that trade and investment between the two countries can be increased. Bayede wine company is one of the participants, and wants to enhance its presence in China. Robinson and Sinclair Wine Company is another exhibitor, while Rooibos Tea will be promoted generically.
The Sweet Service Award goes to the Grass Consumer Action group, which is keeping retailers generally, and Woolworths specifically, on their toes in respect of the humane treatment of their suppliers’ animals, and the ethical and honest labeling of products. Ayrshire milk and cream has been misleadingly labeled, and falsely described as organic, just because (only half of) the cows eat grass; products containing GMO ingredients should be better identified and those ingredients removed; the Sustainability series ‘Hayden Quinn: South Africa‘ has been a greenwash of Woolworths’ misleading consumer communication; and more. Every time Grass challenges Woolworths on an ethical issue, the retail adjusts its labels!
The Sour Service Award goes to Pick ‘n Pay in the V&A Waterfront, and its manager Faizel, the only manager on duty on a recent Sunday evening. I had popped in to buy some bread and bananas, and saw the fruit weighing lady and a colleague chatting away, one even sitting down on the boxes of paw paws. I asked her what the problem was, and was told that she was ill. I asked why she didn’t go home if ill, but she said she was not allowed to. From the time I saw a Pick ‘n Pay staff member and requested her assistance to find the store manager, it took 15 minutes for Faizel to arrive at the till, where I was waiting for him, having already paid. He was rude in telling me that it is the staff member’s duty to tell him when they are ill, not that of customers! Cheekily he asked me if that was the reason why I had called for him!
The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog. Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at email@example.com. Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog. FOR THE DURATION OF MASTERCHEF SA SEASON 3 WE ARE MOVING THE SWEET & SOUR SERVICE AWARDS TO SATURDAYS.
Last night I was invited to the first media launch in the country of FitChef, a new service of healthy meals and smoothies delivered into one’s home, as per one’s chosen mealplan. A range of options is offered, including Banting/LCHF, detox and weight loss, vegetarian, and wellness. More than 50000 meal portions and 35000 smoothies are sold around the country monthly.
Developed by founder Wayne Kaminsky, who told us that he was a superfit fitness fanatic sportsman, participating in Ironman and Cape Epic challenges, and needing to find a more healthy eating pattern to lose weight. He was using antibiotics, and could let them go when the benefits of the ‘clean eating’ came to the fore. He moved more and more to healthy foods which he enjoyed cooking, making a batch of portions over weekends, and finding them selling well when he posted photographs of them on Facebook. He started FitChef three years ago, and the Cape region was opened a year ago. Wayne has tremendous energy, and his food preparation skills were impressive, preparing our dinner simultaneously at 10 food stations, at each of which a different dish was prepared. He had prepared some of the dishes, and talked us through each food preparation station, each containing a different set of ingredients for a dish to be made. I noticed that a lot of ingredients came from Woolworths, but Wayne said that they prefer to use Pick ‘n Pay products. I questioned Wayne about his use of some Robertsons products, and he said that it was just for our dinner, and that they use fresh herbs in the factory food preparation. Continue reading →