Problem Plastics, Charging Infrastructure, Beyond Meat, Bluetooth, Scooter Madness

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YouGov finds overwhelming support for banning 'problem plastics': By a wide margin, Brits are more likely to support than oppose a ban on each product. Of the 17 products asked about, for 15 of them a majority of the public supports a ban on the items made either entirely or partly out of plastic. Outlawing disposable coffee cups garners the highest level of support, with 80% of people backing a ban on manufacturing such items with plastic, while only 12% opposing it. Clam-shaped takeaway containers drinking straws, and foam egg boxes are in joint second, with 77% of the public supporting them being taken off the shelves.

G20 to tackle ocean plastic waste as petrochemical producers expand in Asia: Reuters reports, Japan wants to make reducing the glut of plastic waste in the oceans a priority at the Group of 20 summit it is hosting this month as governments around the world crack down on such pollution.

Switch to electric cars hit by ‘poor’ charging infrastructure: FT reports, Parliament’s business, energy, and industrial strategy select committee has described Britain’s charging infrastructure as “poor” and “lacking in size and geographical coverage”, and experts say this is one of the biggest barriers to the widespread adoption of electric vehicles in the UK.

Bloomberg: The race to become the Beyond Meat of fish

Skyrocketing demand is depleting oceans and fueling a problematic fish-farming industry.

@AFP: 86% of internet users admit being duped by fake news: survey

Can bluetooth headsets alleviate depression and insomnia?Brain Machine Interfaces are wearable tech that probe the brain’s electrical circuitry.

Automakers tap VR to banish boredom in autonomous cars.

Margaret Renkl: Scooter madness: Cities are swarming with electric scooters. But this is not the ‘micro-mobility revolution’ we need.

#ESP = End Scotter Pollution

Asian countries take a stand against the rich world’s plastic waste: LAT reports, import bans and stiffer global trade rules are putting a halt to the decades-old practice of shipping scrap to developing countries.

Wellness, Flying Cars, Millennials, San Antonio

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Selling wellness, whether it works or not: WSJ reports, developers command a premium for homes with amenities like infrared saunas and meditation rooms, though some scientists dispute their benefits.

Nearly 1 in 5 students in the US don't have access to computers at home.

Flying cars get a lift from Denso and Honeywell: Nikkei reports, Japanese automotive parts supplier Denso will join forces with Honeywell International to jointly develop electric and hybrid propulsion systems for flying passenger vehicles under plans announced Monday.

Millennials prize experiences: Forget the thread count, plush bathrobes and white goose-down pillows. A vacation is no longer defined by where you stay, but what you do—at least for many millennials.

Pilita Clark: The sad decline of the sensible company name: Many modern businesses offer baffled outsiders no clues about what it is they actually do.

Canada ‘blew’ its chance to be the world’s pot leader: Bloomberg reports, a lack of policy innovation, a messy patchwork of provincial regulations and severe restrictions on marketing and branding have left Canadian pot companies eating the Americans’ dust, according to Neil Selfe, founder, and chief executive officer of Infor Financial Group Inc.

San Antonio as a TV market: It is bigger than Kansas City, Milwaukee, Cincinnati, and Las Vegas on its own. Combine it with Austin, and you have 1.71 million TV households, which is more than Miami-Fort Lauderdale or Denver, + in the ballpark of Minneapolis-St. Paul and Seattle-Tacoma.

MBA Programs, Smartphones, Plastic, Bicycles, Beyond Meat

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WSJ: More universities shut down traditional MBA programs as popularity wanes

Applications to full-time MBA programs have been falling in the strong job market, leading business schools to shift resources online.

LAT: People spend more time on mobile devices than TV, firm says

"In the United States, adults will spend an average of 3 hours and 43 minutes each day on their smartphones, feature phones and tablets this year, eight more minutes than they’ll spend watching TV, according to a forecast released Wednesday by research firm eMarketer."

The backlash to plastic has oil companies worried: Bloomberg reports, the global crackdown on plastic trash threatens to take a big chunk out of demand growth just as oil companies like Saudi Aramco sink billions into plastic and chemicals assets. Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc, Total SA and Exxon Mobil Corp. are all ramping up investments in the sector.

WP: Fewer kids are riding and buying bicycles, and the industry is worried

"The number of children ages 6 to 17 who rode bicycles regularly — more than 25 times a year — decreased by more than a million from 2014 to 2018, according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association. That includes both casual rides around the neighborhood and more serious cycling for fitness or competition."

Reuters: Beyond Meat's home in the meat aisle sparks food fight

Beyond Meat and its new meatless burger rivals are counting on going head to head with meat inside stores. They avoid terms such as vegan or vegetarian, and request stores do not place their products in the supermarket vegan aisle where non-meat eaters traditionally buy tofu, tempeh, and other plant-based alternatives.

Plastics + Coffee Cues + Neuromarketing + Creativity + Decision-making + Juul

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Virgin plastics: As the EU waves through the single-use plastics ban, broadly shuns fracking and pushes for decarbonization by 2050, plans for a wholesale contradiction involving INEOS and US ethane are underway in the city of Antwerp.

Roger Dooley: Does Starbucks make you smarter? One thing the coffee giant has been very smart about is preserving the powerful aroma of roasted coffee beans. Research shows that the mere smell of coffee can improve some cognitive functions. University of Toronto researchers recently published results which verified the concept that coffee cues prime the brain with an expectation of increased sharpness. Subjects from cultures where coffee drinking is common experienced higher levels of alertness and attention when primed with coffee cues than those from tea-oriented cultures.

One sign that neuromarketing has transcended its era of hype and hucksterism: Nielsen now has 16 neuro labs globally, including five in the US. One opened late last year in Cincinnati, Ohio, the heart of client country and home to Procter & Gamble, which is among the marketers that now have neuroscientists in-house.

"I think the industry is still a little bit of wild, wild west. It's still got plenty of snake oil in it," says Duane Varan, CEO of MediaScience.

Creativity peaks in your 20s and 50s: BBC reports, New research from Ohio State University found that our mid-20s is when our brains first become fertile ground for innovation. The study looked at previous winners of the Nobel Prize in economics. It found that those who did their most groundbreaking work in their 20s tended to be "conceptual" innovators. So basically they had a light bulb moment and acted upon it. But don't panic if you've gone past your mid-20s without a flicker of an idea - some of us won't hit our inspirational stride until our mid-50s.

The anatomy of a great decision: Making better decisions is one of the best skills we can develop. Good decisions save time, money, and stress. Here, Shane Parrish breaks down what makes a good decision and what we can do to improve our decision-making processes.

Starbucks, Dunkin race against bans, taxes on disposable cups: Bloomberg reports, inspired by plastic bag bans, jurisdictions have set their sights on a much bigger target: the to-go coffee cup

"There are some big structural changes in manufacturing. The world will make relatively fewer things in the future as digitization replaces goods with services." -- Paul Donovan @ UBS

Bloomberg: Teens say they don't vape, they Juul, making e-cigarette use hard to track

For the first time, public health officials will ask about Juul by name in an annual youth tobacco survey.