Bob Katter “hopping mad” over Akubra’s decision to import rabbit fur; Ritchies forecasts profit growth for the first time in four years: Midday Roundup

Queensland MP Bob Katter says he is “hopping mad” over an Australian hat manufacturer’s decision to no longer use local rabbit skin.

“In all seriousness, I will consider my options,” Katter told the ABC.

“It does not set a good example and it does not set me with a desire to continue to wear an Akubra hat, and that would be something that would be shared with so many other people.”

Akubra is an iconic family business that has been running for more than 100 years.

The company will now no longer use Australian rabbit fur to make its products in order to cut back on costs, a move the business says is necessary for it to stay in business.

The company has been using a blend of local and imported rabbit skins for the past 20 years.

 

Ritchies Supermarkets forecasts profit growth for the first time in four years

 

Australia’s largest independent grocery chain is forecasting profit growth for the first time in four years. 

Ritchies chairman Fred Harrison told Fairfax earnings for the 12 months ending June 2015 are on the rise, the first time the chain’s profits have risen since 2011.

The profit growth is attributed to stronger sales growth and better gross margins.

“I’d be comfortable in saying it will be our best result in four years – there’s been a definite improvement in profitability,” Harrison said.

“We’re seeing some positive signs in our stores. It’s a good thing for our business but it’s only part of a bigger and longer term strategy.”

 

Shares down on open

 

Aussie shares have once again opened lower this morning, in the wake of sharp declines on China’s stock exchange and continued uncertainty in Greece.  

The S&P/ASX 200 benchmark was down 55.3 points to 5414.2 points at 11.29am AEST. On Wednesday, the Dow Jones closed 261.49 points lower, down 1.47% to 17,515.42 points.

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