MEXICO has long been a country that derives extraordinary pleasure from eating and drinking—and it hasn’t minded the consequences much either.
Gordo or gorda, meaning “chubby”, is used by both wives and husbands as a term of endearment. Pudgy kids bear proudly the nickname gordito, as they tuck into snacks after school slathered with beans, cheese, cream and salsa.
Your correspondent, having just arrived to live in Mexico City after more than a decade away, finds the increase in waistlines even more staggering than the increase in traffic. Mexico has become one of the most overweight countries on earth, even more so than the United States; a quarter of its men and a third of its women are obese. Indecorously, the country has even come up with figures on figures: the Mexican Diabetes Federation says that among women between 20 and 49, the average waistline is 91.1cm (35.9 inches), more than 10cm above the “ideal” size. Stores are now full of lar…
The International Longshoremen's Association said its members overwhelmingly approved a new, six-year master contract.
The contract covers some 14,500 workers at 14 ports that handle containerized cargo along the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf Coast.
The settlement ends more than a year of negotiations between employers, represented by the U.S. Maritime Alliance (USMX) and ILA. With the assistance of the offices of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services, the ILA and USMX negotiated well beyond the original contract deadline of Sept. 30, 2012, agreeing to a series of extensions that kept ports open.
USMX membership consists of 24 container carrier members, including the 10 largest carriers worldwide, and every major marine terminal operator and port association on the East and Gulf Coasts.
Along with the master contract, local agreements at most ports along the Atlantic and Gulf Coast also were ratified by ILA members, in…