Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
Hi 26° | Lo 8°

Consumer News

South Korean Unification Minister Hong Yong-pyo announces about the Kaesong industrial complex operations at the government complex in Seoul, South Korea, Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. South Korea says it will suspend operations at the joint industrial park with North Korea in response to the North's recent rocket launch, the first time in the park's decade of operation that Seoul has halted work there. (Kim Jin-a/Newsis via AP) KOREA OUT

S. Korea to shut down joint industrial park with North

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea said Wednesday that it will shut down a joint industrial park with North Korea in response to its recent rocket launch, accusing the North of using hard currency from the park to develop its nuclear and missile programs. The decision to end operations at the industrial complex in the North Korean border city of Kaesong, the last major cooperation project between the rival countries, comes after North Korea on Sunday launched a long-range rocket considered by other nations to be a banned missile technology test. By closing the complex, South Korean President Park Geun-hye has done something her conservative …

Embargo is under the rug, so Persian carpets can roll in

Monday, February 8, 2016

By Sarah Parvini Los Angeles Times (TNS) LOS ANGELES — The call came in to the rug store at 10:30 last Wednesday morning: After five days in U.S. customs, the first batch of carpets imported from Iran were ready for pickup. Years of waiting finally ended for Alex Helmi, owner of Damoka, a Persian rug store in Westwood. He quickly gathered his employees …

Costco delays credit card switch

Friday, February 5, 2016

SEATTLE — Costco’s switch from American Express to Visa is being pushed back to this summer. Costco Wholesale had previously announced that the switch in the only credit card it will accept in its U.S. stores would happen in April. It’s now saying that transition will happen in June or by mid-summer. For years, Amex had been the Seattle-area retail giant’s credit card …

Co-ops end working-member programs amid changing market, labor-law fears

Sunday, January 3, 2016

ALBANY, N.Y. — Food cooperative programs that allow members to scoop rice, sort organic vegetables and ring up sales in return for grocery discounts are fading fast amid a changing marketplace and fears of violating labor laws. The …

US repeals controversial meat labeling law

Sunday, January 3, 2016

WASHINGTON — It’s now harder to find out where your beef or pork was born, raised and slaughtered. After more than a decade of wrangling, Congress repealed a labeling law last month that required retailers to include the …

From commerce to healing: Northampton retailer Mary Lou Heiss of Tea Trekker fights blood cancer

Sunday, January 3, 2016

NORTHAMPTON — After running five storefronts in Northampton over 40 years, retailing has long been an odyssey for merchants Robert and Mary Lou Heiss. They put that sense of adventure into the very name of their latest shop, …

Wings Over Greenfield opening likely during January

Friday, January 1, 2016

GREENFIELD — It appears that it won’t be long before a chicken wings delivery service founded in Amherst in 1999, which has nearly three dozens stores in 13 states, will open a new restaurant in a downtown Greenfield landmark. Besides town inspections — health, building and fire — …

Just think how much money you saved on gas in 2015

Thursday, December 31, 2015

NEW YORK — U.S. drivers saved a bunch of money on gasoline this past year, as Saudi Arabia and other OPEC members kept the pumps going in the face of low oil prices. Massive stockpiles of crude globally turned 2015 into the year of the pain-free fill up. …

Like it or not, gadgets around us will keep getting smarter

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Our cars, our homes, our appliances and even our toys: Things around us are going to keep getting smarter. In 2016, we’ll entrust even more of our lives and their intimate details to machines — not to mention …

Emerging from shadows, pot industry tries to build brands

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

DENVER — Snoop Dogg has his own line of marijuana. So does Willie Nelson. Melissa Etheridge has a marijuana-infused wine. As the fast-growing marijuana industry emerges from the black market and starts looking like a mainstream industry, there’s …

Valley farms get state money to improve food safety measures

Monday, December 28, 2015

HADLEY — The Massachusetts Department of Agriculture has awarded grants to four local farms to help them comply with a new federal food safety law. The farms — Jekanowski Farms and Astarte Farms in Hadley and Old Friends Farm and Simple Gifts Farm in Amherst — received grants …

Jaime and Heather Reloj of Deerfield buy Sigda Flower Shop in Greenfield

Sunday, December 27, 2015

GREENFIELD — When Dr. Edward and Mary Lou Bueno want flowers for a special occasion, they typically go straight to Sigda Flower Shop on High Street. They said that Rick Sigda, the shop’s long-time owner, supplied both of …

Ex-law enforcers drawn to medical pot’s big business

Sunday, December 27, 2015

COLLINSVILLE, Ill. — With fewer than 4,000 approved patients, the nascent medical marijuana business in Illinois is off to a slow start. Yet it hasn’t kept away a cadre of cannabis entrepreneurs who once relied on guns, badges, …