Bitesized Blighty: February 3, 2017

Immy Ransom,  Ligia Vela-Reid

  • Lettuce lovers face rationing” is probably the best headline of the week. Lettuce, courgette (zucchini as you say in the states…), broccoli, salad peppers and cabbage supplies are all feeling the pressure due to bad weather conditions in Europe. The vegetable shortage has caused supermarkets to introduce limits on the amounts individuals are allowed to buy daily, thus sparking a #LettuceCrisis. An ASDA spokesperson used the opportunity to eloquently say “Contrary to popular belief, it seems the rain in Spain doesn’t fall mainly on the plain and a run of unusually bad weather has resulted in availability issues on a small number of salad items and vegetables such as courgettes and aubergines.”
  • EU leaders are meeting in Malta this week to discuss a number of issues, including the future EU-UK relations and relations with the Trump administration. Theresa May is holding talks with EU Nato members as she attempts to build alliances ahead of Brexit. The UK is one of the few alliance members to meet pledges to spend a minimum of 2% of GDP on defence. Mrs. May's visit comes two days after MPs voted to allow her to get Brexit negotiations under way.
  • In a speech on Thursday night, Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon warned that Russia was carrying out a sustained campaign of cyber attacks targeting democracy and critical infrastructure in the West. The Commons Public Accounts Committee found that the role of the Cabinet Office, which is responsible for protecting all government information from attack, remained unclear and the committee of MPs criticised the current cyber defense system. A debate has ensued around the threat of data breaches and how the government should interfere. 

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