Could Brexit put the brakes on a sugar tax?

That’s certainly what the UK food and drinks industry is lobbying for “as manufacturers face a shortage of workers, cost inflation and weak consumer confidence since the Brexit vote,” the Guardian writes. The UK government announced plans to levy a sugar tax on soft drinks earlier in the year as it looks to fight obesity. But now the industry says any tax could do major harm to a sector that accounts for 16% of UK manufacturing by turnover and “has been rocked by the Brexit vote as the collapse in the value of the pound increases the cost of imported ingredients and a question mark hangs over the status of its large migrant workforce.”

Detoxing the catwalk

H&M, Benetton and Inditex sit top of the pack in this year’s Detox Catwalk - Greenpeace’s list of fashion brands cleaning up their sourcing and supply chains. “Over 70 major clothing labels made a commitment to Greenpeace to remove toxic chemicals from their supply chains completely by 2020, and the new report monitors their progress towards this goal,” Huffington Post reports. A second tier of companies including Mango, Adidas, Burberry, Primark, Levis, Puma and M&S are deemed by Greenpeace to be “committed to Detox and have made progress implementing their plans, but their actions need to evolve faster”.

Challenging gig economy wisdom

The so-called gig economy has helped create enormous value for lean start ups like Uber and other tech companies. But is building a company on the back of flexible freelance labour a sustainable model of business? Not according to real estate company Redfin, which over the past 10 years has hired full-time employees and put them on the payroll — with benefits, the New York Times writes. It notes that “prospective venture fund investors walked away [from Redfin] saying that betting on full-time employees was a deal killer for them.” But founder Glenn Kelman argues that full-time employees allow him to offer better customer service - a crucial component of any real estate business. 

Should Adidas drop Messi over tax sentence?

When should a sports brand stand by one of its stars and when should it drop them?  Following Lionel Messi’s conviction in a Spanish court for tax fraud Adidas has come under pressure for its sponsorship support of the Argentinian and Barcelona soccer star. Now, as PR Week reports, “In a survey of 1,000 British people by the OnePulse mobile app, 65% said they believe Adidas should reconsider Messi’s sponsorship.” Just under half of those surveyed think Adidas should shorten the length of any existing sponsorship deal and 16% said the brand should cut its ties with Messi. That said, 8% believed Messi’s conviction “showed the star in a more positive light.”

Wieden & Kennedy makes Black Lives Matters statement

Finally today, Adage notes the online statement made by advertising agency Wieden & Kennedy following the shootings by police of two African-American men last week. The brief message but powerful message that takes over the agency’s home page is notable says Adage “especially since many other agencies or marketers have remained silent.”

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