Baby formula, the new heroin

Written by Cliff on Friday 10 January 2014 at 10:04 am

Food safety issues in China caught international attention in 2008 when it was discovered that melamine had been added to baby milk powder and other foods by 22 different companies. Five years later, Chinese consumers still distrust domestic milk powder makers. This year, tourists and smugglers caused shortages of baby formula in Hong Kong, Sydney and even Europe as they brought huge quantities of powder back to China. In Hong Kong, arrests for smuggling baby formula have topped the number of arrests for smuggling cocaine, heroin and ketamine combined.

Airplay mirroring quality

Written by Cliff on Saturday 7 September 2013 at 3:12 pm

If you find that the picture quality of airplay mirroring from your Mac to Apple TV has worsened, try restarting your Mac.


Written by Cliff on Monday 30 May 2011 at 2:18 pm

[graphic – image – needles – microscopic analysis]
Please tell your ‘brothaas’ and ‘sistaas’ not to reuse needles, as doing so will increase the chance of infection due to unclean lacerations and body fluid transfer.

Newspaper hot air

Written by Cliff on Monday 18 October 2010 at 8:11 pm

“In a volatile market, funds tend to make their way into the financial sector, so once a correction takes place, money pulls out first from this sector,” said Castor Pang, research director at Cinda International Holdings Ltd.

In other words: sometimes, money tends to go into stocks. When people sell their shares, money goes out of the stock market.


PRC supermarkets ‘prohibit’ farm chemicals and pesticides

Written by Cliff on Friday 8 October 2010 at 12:28 pm

According to the prospectus of Springland International Holdings (1700.HK), “As freshness and food safety are our primary concerns, farm chemicals or pesticides are prohibited in the vegetable production process at the vegetable production site”.

Exercise: visit their ‘vegetable production site’ in Yixin, China and observe whether farm chemicals are used and the quality of the soil. Afterwards, visit Nutrilite’s organic farm in Lakeview, LA, USA and compare the two.

Summertime Job Search

Written by Cliff on Friday 9 July 2010 at 10:49 am

Summertime is here and the youth are out job-hunting again. Given last year’s experience with illegal pyramid scheme companies, we would like to set out here, in collaboration with the Direct Selling Association, the difference between legitimate businesses and pyramid schemes.

Pyramid schemes are forbidden by law under the Pyramid Selling Prohibition Ordinance and perhaps also under the Chit-Fund Business (Prohibition) Ordinance.

As a primer, most legitimate companies using the direct selling model have a venerable history of over 35 years, whereas companies running illegal schemes run for not more 2 years. Here is a list so you can check whether you are being conned.

Entry Fee Requires a minimal entry fee and it is not mandatory to buy a product inventory. Requires participants to pay a large sum as entry fee and buy a huge amount of products as prerequisite for joining the company.
Sales & Marketing Plan The sales and marketing plan is based on product sale. Distributor income is derived from the sale of high quality products at retail. Neglects product sale and derives income from recruiting and entry.
Buy Back from Distributors Does not require distributors to buy a product inventory and allows return of saleable merchandises within a reasonable period of time or upon resignation. Prohibits return of merchandise or impose stringent rules on product return.
Customer Satisfaction Guarantee Accepts product return from customers who are not satisfied with a product within a certain period of time. Refuses reasonable request for product return.
Product Quality Offers products of high quality and value. These products are competitive in the market and upon which distributors can develop their business. Does not guarantee product quality. The products are difficult to sell because they are marked up beyond market prices.
Claims Will not make unjustifiable claims or unrealistic commitment. Always overstates products’ effectiveness, retail profit and bonus income so as to lure people to join the company.
Distributor Training Has a comprehensive sales and marketing plan and professional management and provides training for distributors to assist them in developing their business. Ignores distributor training or makes use of training as a means to generate income.

The joys of Hong Kong

Written by Cliff on Wednesday 20 January 2010 at 4:57 pm

We live in a city where antitrust laws have done their utmost to the public good. Our cellphone plans are cheap, our food is quite cheap, our trains are on time and air conditioned, our airport is world-class… and the list goes on. Meanwhile, lets take a look at the stone-age cell phone plans in the USA!

usa cell phone plans are expensive

Quality of life v Tax

Written by Cliff on Tuesday 12 January 2010 at 10:32 am

mac prices across the world

mac prices across the world

It appears that the more you are taxed, the lower your quality of life. Or more accurately, the fewer Macs you can afford, the worse off you are.

On Parking Spaces

Written by Cliff on Wednesday 2 December 2009 at 11:01 am

Say, when you buy a car park space and the conditions say that one residential tenant shall have one car park space, can you park two vehicles on that space, one on top of the other, using a stacking device? Join the forum discussion on this post – (6) Posts

More market confirmation

Written by Cliff on Wednesday 25 November 2009 at 3:16 pm

nutrilite_logoDonald Trump, if that means anything to you, has given his thumbs up to the growing trend of preventative health care by teaming himself up with a 12-year old Massachusetts-based health food company. Unfortunately for him, he has once again joined with the wrong partner. No one in their right mind would join someone else other than those with the best scientific team and most established distribution network in the market. If Donald did his due diligence, he would discover that Nutrilite, and not his new parter, is the only health food brand with their own certified organic farms across unpolluted lands in North and South America – and they’ve been doing it for 75 years with year-on-year growth.

Health foods are eaten over long periods of time, and it would only be wise to join those who have as much experience as possible. Foods are not tested rigorously by the FDA or equivalent organisations, therefore, it is imperative that the company making and selling these items be tested by millions of customers and by time itself. Nutrilite shines in that respect. In fact, it is the world’s first manufacturer of natural vitamin and mineral supplements. By turning his investment to a baby company with less experience and no proven safety record, Donald could be endangering the world.

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