n After being open for seven years, a 200sq ft Starbucks coffee shop in Beijing’s Forbidden City has been forced to close, following an internet petition, signed by 500,000 people. It was claimed that the outlet was not in keeping with the culture of the old Imperial Palace.

n TNS Worldpanel grocery market share figures for the 12 weeks to 15 July 2007 show signs of a consumer slowdown, with market growth dipping to 4%, compared with 5% in 2006. This follows last year’s Football World Cup-inspired sales and this summer’s poor weather. Figures for the 12 weeks to June showed growth of 6%.

n A Cumbrian pork, sage and apple pie has won expanding Darlington piemaker The Angel’s Share, a Waitrose Small Producer Award in the grocery and bakery sector and, with it, the chance to supply some of the retailer’s stores.

n Pie and sandwich maker Samworth Brothers helped raise more than £100,000 for UK charities by putting its customers, including teams from Tesco, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer, through the 12-hour outdoor Ullswater Charity Challenge. Thirty teams, took part in the challenge, organised by Samworth.

n American researchers have linked high glycaemic index (GI) diets with increased risk of developing the middle-aged sight disorder, age-related macular degeneration, said to affect 30 million people worldwide and now the leading cause of blindness in the over-50s.

The study from Tufts University, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, said high-GI diets, which cause blood sugars to rise rapidly, increased the risk by 49%.