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Consumer News

After 20-year hiatus, Alfa Romeo officially back in the US

Thursday, November 20, 2014

LOS ANGELES — Alfa Romeo is back in the U.S. after a 20-year hiatus. This week dealerships are starting to receive shipments of the low-volume 4C sports car, which starts at $53,900, said Reid Bigland, head of the brand in North America. The plan is to provide eight Alfa Romeo cars and SUV models for North America by 2018 with total sales of 150,000. Globally, the business plan is to …

Hearing draws apology, admission in air-bag mess

Thursday, November 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — The global quality chief of Takata Corp. apologized and an official from Honda acknowledged the automaker broke a disclosure law as a Senate committee put the spotlight on a growing problem with exploding air bags. Hiroshi Shimizu, Takata’s senior vice president of quality, said the Japanese parts supplier is “deeply sorry …

Consumer group lists ‘10 worst toys’ for kids

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

BOSTON — A light-up bow whose arrows are advertised as flying up to 145 feet and the “Catapencil” — a pencil with a miniature slingshot-style launcher on its end — are on an annual list of unsafe toys released Wednesday by a Massachusetts-based consumer watchdog group. World Against Toys Causing Harm, or W.A.T.C.H., …

Feds push for national air bag recall

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

DETROIT — The federal government is demanding that the auto industry recall millions of additional cars equipped with faulty air bags that can injure — and even kill — a driver. The action Tuesday by the National Highway …

Vitamin company eyes new facility in Hadley University Park

Sunday, November 16, 2014

HADLEY — A company that manufactures vitamins is planning to construct a 24,000-square-foot facility in the Hadley University Park off North Maple Street. American River Nutrition, which has its headquarters at 31 Campus Plaza Road, is bringing the project before the Planning Board Tuesday at 7:15 p.m. The …

Price Chopper supermarket chain changing its name to Market 32

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. — The Price Chopper supermarket chain plans to change the name of its 135 stores in six states to Market 32 in a $300 million rebranding move. Schenectady-based parent company Golub Corp. announced Tuesday that the change will begin in the spring as the chain modernizes …

Ford ready to roll out aluminum F-150

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

DEARBORN, Mich. — Russell Barnett, a Ford dealer in Tennessee, is ready for aluminum. Ford is using the metal almost exclusively in body of the 2015 version of its best-selling F-150 pickup, which starts arriving at dealerships next …

Inventor of CorningWare ceramic glass dies in New York

Thursday, November 6, 2014

DES MOINES, Iowa — S. Donald Stookey is no household name, but his best-known invention truly is: CorningWare, the durable, heat-resistant ceramic glass used since the 1950s to make millions upon millions of baked lasagnas, tuna casseroles and …

Personal stories of hope and invesment by young business owners in retail-rich Northampton

Saturday, November 1, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — On the day Ben Glushein opened Port MA, his new Main Street clothing store, he received a small potted cactus. The cactus came from the home goods store Kestrel on Masonic Street, owned and run by Eliza Jane Bradley, where it was bought by Kristin Kelly, …

Hot Table Panini will open at new mini-mall on Route 9 in Hadley

Friday, October 31, 2014

HADLEY — Amid the many tenants which are national chains preparing to open in a new mini-mall on Route 9 will be one that is family-owned and headquartered in Springfield. Hot Table Panini will open later this month between a Starbucks and Aspen Dental, said John DeVoie, the …

Carr’s Ciderhouse in Hadley carves its place in the new and fast-growing cider market

Monday, October 27, 2014

Comparing apples to apples is just good practice. Do it for 20 years, and you’ve got yourself a tradition. The 20th annual Franklin County CiderDays runs from Friday to Sunday and features classes, hangouts, talks and tastings throughout the Hilltowns. This year they’ve added a Friday-night kickoff reception …

Senators push for nationwide air bag recall

Friday, October 24, 2014

DETROIT — Two U.S. senators are calling on regulators to issue a nationwide recall of cars with faulty air bags made by Takata Corp., questioning why automakers have been allowed to limit recalls to only certain locations with …

US urges car owners to get air bags fixed

Monday, October 20, 2014

DETROIT — A potential safety crisis over defective air bags widened Monday as the U.S. government issued an urgent plea to more than 4.7 million people to get their cars fixed. The inflator mechanisms in the air bags …