Source: Getty ImagesThis year’s dire wheat crop in the UK has left farmers and millers with concerns that bread prices may rise. Farmers have faced heavy rain during winter and one of the driest springs on record, according to Tom Bradshaw, vice president of the National Farmers Union (NFU). Establishing crops was difficult and winter drilled crops lacked any spring growth.“The combined weather pattern has resulted in the UK’s lowest wheat crop area in 40 years this summer and we expect yields to strike a similar multi-decade low. This demonstrates the volatility that can be experienced across a farming year and why food production and food security must be taken seriously,” he added.Millers have started to import a greater volume of wheat from Germany in recent weeks to cover the domestic shortfall, adds David Eudall, head of arable market specialists at the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB).Coronavirus distancing measures have meant that sample taking and analysis from farms is proceeding more slowly than usual. Therefore, a clear picture of the harvest has not yet emerged.“We know that it will be small with many predictions around 10 million tonnes – down from 16 million tonnes last year. A crop of 10 million tonnes would represent the largest season-on-season drop –percentage and actual tonnage- in UK wheat production since records began in 1892,” said Alex Waugh, director general of the National Association of British and Irish Millers (Nabim).The smaller UK crop and lack of farmer selling have pushed delivered prices for bread wheat in the benchmark region of North West England up by nearly £50 per tonne (30%) compared with 2019, he said.However, Eudall notes that wheat only accounts for 11% of the cost of a loaf of bread.“There is no direct relationship between the price of wheat and the price of bread, so even though prices of wheat have risen in light of the lower UK harvest this year, this doesn’t mean that bread prices will rise as well. Bread prices have lowered slightly during the year and retail prices are lowering in light of the coronavirus created recession,” he said.Waugh believes that a no-deal Brexit may increase the possibility of an import duty of £79 per tonne being applied to wheat from the EU from January 1 2021. This will add further pressure to the market, and a big import programme this autumn will seem inevitable, he added.“Wheat prices only make up a fraction of the final cost of a loaf of bread, therefore a rise in the cost of wheat is unlikely to have much impact on store prices of bakery products. Furthermore, in a competitive market where consumers demand the best value, especially on staple items, retailers will do everything possible to prevent price rises,” said Andrew Opie, director of food & sustainability at the British Retail Consortium.
Something Rotten! The Bard does some pretty crazy stuff in Something Rotten—and while the new Broadway musical comedy by Wayne and Karey Kirkpatrick and John O’Farrell is far from a biography, tons of juicy rumors really did swirl around William Shakespeare in his day. A few of these myths have since been debunked, while others might always remain a mystery. Check out our favorite wild rumors about the prolific playwright!1. Shakespeare smoked pot and crack?!The Bard mentioned “noted weed” in “Sonnet 76,” and art may have imitated life. South African scientists found traces of cannabis in pipes found in the playwright’s garden—the cannabis was found in a low concentration, so the word is still out on whether the playwright was a pothead. There were, however, definite traces of cocaine, according to National Geographic. “The readings we got were the same as if it had tested a modern-day crack pipe,” said Tommy van der Merwe of the Forensic Science Laboratory. Um, WHAT?2. He was really his godson’s father?!Soon after the Bard’s death, the playwright’s godson William Davenant announced publicly that he was actually Shakespeare’s son. Although he was unable to provide any real proof, Davenant, who was also a playwright, was named after Shakespeare. Hmm, that sounds suspicious. We’re gonna stick this one in the “rumors” pile, considering Davenant was the only person who swore it was the truth.3. The Bard was a deer thief?!As the old story goes, Shakespeare was arrested and put in prison for stealing the deer of Sir Thomas Lucy, a chief enforcer of Walshingham and Elizabeth. The Bard then purportedly wrote an angry poem and placed it on Lucy’s gate. Is this true? No one knows—but according to PBS, three separate 17th-century accounts have insisted it really happened!4. He was actually the Queen?!Will the real Bard please stand up? Some historians theorize that “William Shakespeare” was a pseudonym, and tons of people have been rumored to be the playwright, including Sir Francis Bacon, 17th Earl of Oxford, Christopher Marlowe and William Stanley. The wildest hypothesis? Queen Elizabeth I. Hmm, the Queen does draw a striking resemblance to Shakespeare…5. Shakespeare was gay?!Even though he was married with children (it’s widely believed he got hitched to the already-pregnant Anne Hathaway when he was 18 and she was 26), some sources suspect that the playwright preferred the company of men. Just ask Sir Ian McKellen! “Married, with children, he left his wife in Stratford to live in London. I’d say he slept with men,” McKellen told Page Six. “No doubt Shakespeare was gay.” Thanks Sir, for setting us straight—uh, gay! View Comments Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 1, 2017
The search for a Fort St. John musician who went missing in the Quesnel area nearly two weeks ago has turned up tragic results.The BC Coroners Service confirmed today Heath Onstine was found dead and pulled from the Johnson Slough area of the Fraser River near Hope on Monday, after going missing near the Quesnel River earlier this month. Onstine was 49.In a release, the Coroners Service said Onstine was visiting Quesnel on the weekend of June 13. Local RCMP there became involved in a investigation the following day after reports that a car may have gone into the river off the Baston Road.- Advertisement -North District RCMP say officers found a license plate at the scene of the suspected accident, along with debris along the bank heading toward the river.Underwater rescue crews had been waiting for a chance to search the river, but were stymied by high and fast-moving currents.Hope Search and Rescue crews retrieved the body and RCMP have ruled out foul play. Coroner officials and RCMP continue to investigate.Advertisement The Quesnel River dumps into the Fraser River, which winds its way down to the Lower Mainland and through the community of Hope. Some 90 people turned out for a public search on June 18 along the river.Originally from Terrace, Onstine was a popular musician in Fort St. John, playing with several bands including C.C. Brooks and the Dog and Pony Show, and was slated to play with the Mat Savard Band at the upcoming CanolaFest in July, among a host of others.Friends and acquaintances have taken to Facebook to offer their condolences.“Glad they found him, but like everyone else, was hoping for a different ending. He is missed,” wrote Nancy Lilienweiss on a public page dedicated to public search efforts for Onstine.Advertisement