Archive for Mary Meisenzahl

COVID-19 vaccines will be available at thousands of pharmacies across the US starting February 11

COVID Vaccine
A coronavirus vaccine. The White House on Tuesday announced an initiative to vaccinate people at pharmacy chains across the US.
  • The US government authorized thousands of pharmacies to distribute coronavirus vaccines.
  • The program is set to begin on February 11 with 1 million total doses per week.
  • Walmart, CVS, and Walgreens are among the chains set to vaccinate people at no charge.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Coronavirus vaccines will soon be available at US pharmacies with the rollout of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination, the White House announced on Tuesday.

The program means that over 40,000 US pharmacies are set to receive vaccine doses to give to eligible people at no charge beginning on February 11, with 1 million doses per week set to go to 6,500 locations to start, the White House said.

The White House said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention worked with states to decide the first pharmacies to partner with based on how well they would be able to reach at-risk populations. States will continue to receive doses to distribute.

Read more: Here's how much CVS and Walgreens stand to profit as the federal government opens up access to COVID-19 shots at retail pharmacies

The CDC recommended that people waiting for the vaccine check their local pharmacy's website to see whether it's available and who qualifies.

Walmart has told customers to reserve an appointment through a scheduling tool on its website that also includes a reminder for the second dose. CVS has asked customers to make appointments through the CVS app or website, as have most other providers authorized by the CDC.

The vaccines available at pharmacies will be limited at first, with allocations determined by the federal government. Each state determines the distribution of its vaccines and eligibility for them.

These are the pharmacy chains partnering with the federal government to distribute vaccines, according to the White House:

  • Walgreens (including Duane Reade)
  • CVS Pharmacy (including Long's)
  • Walmart (including Sam's Club)
  • Rite Aid
  • Kroger (including Kroger, Harris Teeter, Fred Meyer, Fry's, Ralphs, King Soopers, Smiths, City Market, Dillons, Mariano's, Pick-n-Save, Copps, Metro Market)
  • Publix
  • Costco
  • Albertsons (including Osco, Jewel-Osco, Albertsons, Albertsons Market, Safeway, Tom Thumb, Star Market, Shaw's, Haggen, Acme, Randalls, Carrs, Market Street, United, Vons, Pavilions, Amigos, Lucky's, Pak n Save, Sav-On)
  • Hy-Vee
  • Meijer
  • H-E-B
  • Retail Business Services (including Food Lion, Giant Food, The Giant Company, Hannaford Bros Co, Stop & Shop)
  • Winn-Dixie (including Winn-Dixie, Harveys, Fresco Y Mas)

Other networks of independent pharmacies will also participate, the White House said.

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Dolly Parton re-recorded her iconic ‘9 to 5’ for a Squarespace Super Bowl commercial about side hustles

dolly parton
  • Dolly Parton recorded a new version of "9 to 5" for a Super Bowl ad.
  • The new song is called "5 to 9," for people who run side projects on Squarespace.
  • A new line of Dolly Parton fragrances hosted on Squarespace will also launch before the Super Bowl.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Dolly Parton partnered with Squarespace for a twist on her well-known song "9 to 5" for a Super Bowl commercial. 

The new version of the song is titled "5 to 9," in a "rallying call to those dreaming of turning their after-hours passion project into their own business," Squarespace said in a statement. The music video, directed by Damien Chazelle, shows office workers sitting in gray cubicles until they transform the space with their creative side project.

Read more: Inside the explosion of buy-now, pay-later services like Klarna, now facing regulation after worries young people are falling into debt

"With all that's going on in the world we wanted to try to put out a piece that injected optimism, rather than going a more serious route," Squarespace chief creative officer David Lee told Ad Age. "On the heels of the historically bad year we have had with the pandemic and economic uncertainty, more people than ever are considering entrepreneurship and looking to become their own boss."

Squarespace is a content management system company that lets customers create and maintain websites. The privately held company was last valued at $1.7 billion in 2017, according to Pitchbook, and it recently announced that it confidentially filed for a stock market listing.

Alongside the ad, Squarespace is also hosting a website for Parton's new fragrance line, which will launch before the Super Bowl.

Watch the music video here.

 

 

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Skinny jeans are never going away, says Levi’s CEO, even as denim sales plunge during the pandemic

Levi's jeans
  • Levi's CEO Chip Bergh said that he thinks skinny jeans are never going away.
  • Bergh noted the growing popularity of looser fits, though.
  • Levi's revenue in the recent holiday quarter was down 12% year-over-year.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Skinny jeans are here top stay despite frequent predictions that they're going out of style, Levi Strauss & Co. chief executive Chip Bergh told investors on Wednesday.

On the conference call, an analyst asked if the denim retailer was seeing baggy jeans resurge as clothing trends towards comfortable and casual options amid the pandemic. Levi's launched a loose fit line of jeans for men and women last season which was "off to a very very fast start," Bergh said. Overall revenues for the quarter were down 12%.

He says not only is Levi's seeing the trend, but also leading it. "I think it's here to stay."

Read more: Insiders who worked with Instagram mega influencer Danielle Bernstein say she rips off fashion designers and gets away with it

Don't throw away your skinny jeans just yet, though. Bergh followed up by saying "I don't think skinny jeans are ever going away on the women's side of the business," despite a clear trend towards "casual, looser fitting clothes in general."

Fashion magazines and influencers have been predicting the end of skinny jeans for years, and they were only accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic leaving people at home. In March, Cosmo asked "Wait...are skinny jeans out?!" and advised readers towards straight-legged fits. Elle was even more direct, declaring "The skinny jean is dead" in July. 

Read more: Jen Sey was a champion gymnast before ascending to become global brand president of Levi's. Here's how her experience competing - and speaking out about abuse in the sport - has influenced her leadership style.

Skinny jeans seem here to stay as long as denim is popular, at least according to the self proclaimed "global leader in denim by a mile." The future of jeans themselves though, is murky as the industry turns towards loungewear and even Levi's has started making unisex sweatsuits. 

Read the original article on Business Insider

Levi’s sales are down as remote workers turn to loungewear over jeans

levi's
  • Levi's revenue in the recent holiday quarter was down 12% year-over-year.
  • Sales beat expectations as losses slowed in the fourth quarter.
  • As many remote workers trade out their jeans for sweats, Levi's is starting to sell loungewear.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Levi Strauss & Co reported its fourth-quarter earnings on Wednesday, revealing that revenue was down 12% in the holiday period - an improvement over the prior quarter.

Despite the double-digit revenue decline, the fourth quarter still generated positive cash flow, and president and CEO Chip Bergh highlighted that sales beat Wall Street expectations during an investor call Wednesday.

The holiday quarter was better than the third quarter, which saw a 27% decline in revenue, thanks in part to Black Friday. Bergh called it a "really strong year given the backdrop" of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more: Insiders who worked with Instagram mega influencer Danielle Bernstein say she rips off fashion designers and gets away with it

Still, even as losses grow smaller, the future of jeans, or "hard pants," is unclear as people spend more time at home and loungewear becomes more acceptable. Experts have been predicting the end of jeans as go-to casual wear since the pandemic began, in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, NPR, and other outlets, noting that jean sales were already falling before the pandemic. 

Bergh and the company acknowledged that "changes look like they're here to stay," including "casualization," or more loungewear. Notably, losses were greatest in Asia, at 14%, though the continent has seen the most success in batting COVID-19 and reopening. 

Levi's calls itself the "global leader in denim by a mile" in an investor call, but that might not mean much if jeans are no longer at the top. Even the denim company itself seems to recognize and hedge for this possibility by developing other products. The Red Tab line of unisex sweat suits in muted colors aimed at Gen Z sold out in only a few weeks. 

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McDonald’s is bringing back Spicy Chicken McNuggets after they sold out in 2 weeks in September

Spicy McNuggets 2 (2)
Spicy McNuggets.
  • Spicy Chicken McNuggets and Mighty Hot Sauce are returning to McDonald's menus in February.
  • When they were first introduced in September they sold out within two weeks.
  • McDonald's statement hints at fans' role in bringing back the McNuggets.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

McDonald's is bringing back Spicy Chicken McNuggets to locations across the US starting February 1. 

The new McNugget variety was first introduced in September 2020, and they sold out in only two weeks. While they were always meant to be a limited release, the short timing showed that they were more popular than McDonald's anticipated. The February release will also be for a limited time, although McDonald's declined to say exactly how long.

Read more: Panera hopes 'Virtual Catering' will win back major clients and revive its part of the $60 billion industry

The fast-food giant seems to be anticipating selling out quickly again, warning "make sure to snag your Spicy Chicken McNuggets and Mighty Hot Sauce orders fast, since the hottest menu items in town won't stick around forever" in the press release.

The McNuggets are coated in a mix made with cayenne and chili peppers, the first flavor change since the McNugget's 1983 debut. McDonald's is also bringing back the Mighty Hot dipping sauce first released in September, made of a blend of crushed red peppers and chilis. 

McDonald's explicitly acknowledges fans' social media outcry in its announcement. "You loved them (thanks for the tens of thousands of tweets, by the way). They left. You wanted them back" it said in a press release, including tweets begging the chain to bring back Spicy Chicken McNuggets.

McDonalds spicy chicken nuggets

Chains have increasingly teased customers on social media with the prospect of bringing back favorite menu items. McDonald's employed the same strategy in 2020 leading up to the return of the McRib.

Taco Bell recently announced the return of potatoes, which were removed in 2020, saying "We definitely heard from our consumers - because they love our potatoes." Taco Bell's global chief food innovation officer Liz Matthews even hinted that fans could influence the potential return of the Mexican Pizza.

McDonald's alluded to more new menu items on the horizon, adding "chicken fans can rest assured that we're not stopping here."

Read the original article on Business Insider

McDonald’s is bringing back Spicy Chicken McNuggets after they sold out in 2 weeks in September

Spicy McNuggets 2 (2)
Spicy McNuggets.
  • Spicy Chicken McNuggets and Mighty Hot Sauce are returning to McDonald's menus in February.
  • When they were first introduced in September they sold out within two weeks.
  • McDonald's statement hints at fans' role in bringing back the McNuggets.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

McDonald's is bringing back Spicy Chicken McNuggets to locations across the US starting February 1. 

The new McNugget variety was first introduced in September 2020, and they sold out in only two weeks. While they were always meant to be a limited release, the short timing showed that they were more popular than McDonald's anticipated. The February release will also be for a limited time, although McDonald's declined to say exactly how long.

Read more: Panera hopes 'Virtual Catering' will win back major clients and revive its part of the $60 billion industry

The fast-food giant seems to be anticipating selling out quickly again, warning "make sure to snag your Spicy Chicken McNuggets and Mighty Hot Sauce orders fast, since the hottest menu items in town won't stick around forever" in the press release.

The McNuggets are coated in a mix made with cayenne and chili peppers, the first flavor change since the McNugget's 1983 debut. McDonald's is also bringing back the Mighty Hot dipping sauce first released in September, made of a blend of crushed red peppers and chilis. 

McDonald's explicitly acknowledges fans' social media outcry in its announcement. "You loved them (thanks for the tens of thousands of tweets, by the way). They left. You wanted them back" it said in a press release, including tweets begging the chain to bring back Spicy Chicken McNuggets.

McDonalds spicy chicken nuggets

Chains have increasingly teased customers on social media with the prospect of bringing back favorite menu items. McDonald's employed the same strategy in 2020 leading up to the return of the McRib.

Taco Bell recently announced the return of potatoes, which were removed in 2020, saying "We definitely heard from our consumers - because they love our potatoes." Taco Bell's global chief food innovation officer Liz Matthews even hinted that fans could influence the potential return of the Mexican Pizza.

McDonald's alluded to more new menu items on the horizon, adding "chicken fans can rest assured that we're not stopping here."

Read the original article on Business Insider

All 4 nurses in a Kansas county’s health department refused to give out COVID-19 vaccines

Coronavirus vaccine
Pharmacies are finding themselves with leftover coronavirus vaccines, meaning some people can score a shot early with the planning.
  • All four nurses in one Kansas county's health department refused to give patients COVID-19 vaccines.
  • The health department administrator shared debunked vaccine misinformation as part of their reasoning.
  • The county will contract with other nurses to distribute the vaccine.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

All four nurses working in the health department of Coffey County in Kansas said they wouldn't give people the COVID-19 vaccine, a sign of how misinformation about the shots is spreading even among health professionals.

In a January 4 county commission meeting, health department administrator Lindsay Payer said that they were not willing to give the COVID-19 vaccine, The Daily Beast reported.

"My staff is not comfortable with that. It's a new technology we've never seen before," Payer told the Board of Commissioners in the meeting, which is available on YouTube.

MRNA vaccines, like those being distributed now for the coronavirus, have been studied since the 1990s.

Read more: What to say to a friend who's skeptical of getting the coronavirus vaccine

Payer said that she and other nurses in the department were uncomfortable with the vaccines and unsure of their safety, citing inaccurate information about the shots. She told the board that the health department would hire outside nurses who were willing to distribute the vaccine.

Coronavirus vaccines from both Pfizer and Moderna were studied in tens of thousands of people. Pfizer's late stage trial, for instance, included more than 43,000 people. The vaccines weren't rushed - countries and organizations invested heavily in all stages of the development process, saving time. Scientists were also able to build on previous work on vaccines for MERS and SARS, which are also coronaviruses.

Data on both vaccines was scrutinized by the US Food and Drug Administration before the agency issued emergency-use authorizations for the injections. FDA found that the shots were highly effective and safe for most people to take.

As of January 13, Payer and other Coffey County health department nurses had not changed their minds. She told 13 News in Topeka that it was a personal decision for each nurse, not a message for or against getting the vaccine.

Read more: As an autism researcher, I've dealt with anti-vax misinformation for years. Here's how we can combat it during the COVID vaccine rollout

County Medical Officer Dr. Jeff Sloyer refuted Payer's misinformation in the next meeting.

"Both of these vaccines were very well studied," he said, according to Topeka's 13 News

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment shared a statement with 13 News on the safety and efficacy of vaccines.

"The data demonstrate that the known and potential benefits of this vaccine outweigh the known and potential harms of becoming infected with COVID-19," the department said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The NRA has filed for bankruptcy after years of financial troubles

NRA
Then NRA Executive Director Chris Cox, left, President Donald Trump, and CEO Wayne LaPierre on April 28, 2017.
  • The NRA said it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Friday.
  • The organization has been beset by financial troubles for years.
  • The NRA is also relocating from New York to Texas, where it will register as a nonprofit. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The National Rifle Association has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the group said in a statement Friday.

The move is part of a restructuring process, the NRA said, and "day-to-day operations, training programs, and Second Amendment advocacy will continue as usual." Marschall Smith, a former senior vice president of 3M Co., has been named chief restructuring officer.

Read more: SCOOP: Don Jr. eyes a run for NRA chief. It's one more way the Trump family is making big plays to cement itself in GOP conservative politics for the next 4 years.

The gun-advocacy organization also said it was officially moving away from New York and what it called a "corrupt political and regulatory environment" to register as a nonprofit in Texas. In August, New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit to dissolve the NRA. In a settlement, the organization had to pay $2.5 million in fines and agree to a five-year suspension of its insurance.

The NRA has been in financial trouble for years. Internal financial documents showed it increased spending over revenue and ran a deficit for several years, including a gap of $10.8 million in 2018. Spending jumped in travel, entertainment, and legal and audit categories. Meanwhile, the organization cut spending for gun-safety programs.

Ohio State University accounting professor Brian Mittendorf, who examined the financial documents, told The Washington Post in 2019 that the documents were like those of a person living "paycheck to paycheck." In the statement announcing the bankruptcy filing, the organization said it was in "its strongest financial condition in years."

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Multiple dog foods recalled after 70 dogs died due to suspected poisoning

GettyImages 1230340689
  • Pet foods from Midwestern Pet Company are under a voluntary recall.
  • A reported 70 dogs have died, and more than 80 have gotten sick.
  • The food was found to have dangerous levels of aflatoxins, which are produced by mold.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The FDA is warning veterinarians and animal owners that Sportmix pet foods from Midwestern Pet Foods may be toxic.

The dog food might contain dangerous levels of aflatoxins, a toxin created by certain kinds of mold. So far, 70 dogs have died and more than 80 have become ill after eating Sportmix food, although not all the cases are confirmed to be from aflatoxins.

Read more: 'Pet parents' are expected to spend $99 billion on pet care this year, and Walmart has a plan to dominate the segment with pet insurance and dog walking partnerships

Midwestern Pet Foods has issued a voluntary recall of foods produced at the Oklahoma plant, and owners should stop feeding the food to pets immediately and consult a vet. They can also report suspected cases of aflatoxin poisoning to the FDA, which is investigating Midwestern Pet Foods in cooperation with departments of agriculture in 10 states.

Aflatoxin poisoning can cause "sluggishness, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice (yellowish tint to the eyes, gums or skin due to liver damage), and/or diarrhea" according to the FDA. It can also result in long-term liver damage and death. No illnesses have been reported in cats or humans, The New York Times reported, although people are recommended to wash their hands after handling.

The pet food company first issued a voluntary recall in December when tests showed high levels of aflatoxin. On January 11, Midwestern Pet Foods expanded the recall to include other products, and the full list can be found on the FDA's website.

"As a fourth-generation family-owned company, Midwestern Pet Foods has been committed to ensuring that our products are safe and nutritious for nearly 100 years. Until recently, throughout our long history, we've never had a product recall" the company said in a statement. "We continue a thorough review of our facilities and practices in full cooperation with FDA in an effort to better serve our customers and pet parents who put their trust in us."

MPF listed the codes of all the affected pet foods here.

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Tech experts and public figures are blaming Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube for the siege of the US Capitol

capitol
Supporters of President Donald Trump take over balconies and inauguration scaffolding at the United States Capitol on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC.
  • Social media companies have taken steps to temporarily ban Trump and put limits on his accounts.
  • Business leaders and tech experts have called out Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube for their part in the spread of disinformation and conspiracy theories.
  • Violent pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol during the presidential election certification on Wednesday.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube have each taken steps to limit President Trump's accounts on their platforms since pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol on Wednesday, but many business leaders and public figures say its not enough.

Chris Sacca, who was an early investor in Twitter and Instagram, called the social media companies out on Twitter. He wrote that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg have "rationalized this terror" and now "you've got blood on your hands." 

Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has been openly critical of Facebook in the past. On Wednesday, he tweeted a meme calling the insurrection part of a "domino effect" that began as "a website to rate women on campus," a reference to Facebook's origins.

Susan Fowler, who famously called out sexual harassment at Uber, took aim at YouTube. "YouTube is and has been for a while the go-to place for dangerous radicalization content. The fact that YouTube doesn't take white nationalism, racism, and misinformation as seriously as ISIS recruitment videos says something about their priorities and their role in this mess" the New York Times journalist tweeted.

Read more: Resilient, authentic, vulnerable: How to lead like Stacey Abrams

Another Times employee, opinion columnist and tech reporter Kara Swisher, called out Twitter and Facebook in a series of tweets. First, she tagged Dorsey and wrote Trump "has incited violence for days, using your tools in large part and you need to act now." In a followup tweet, she tagged Zuckerberg,  Sheryl Sandberg, and global public policy chief Joel Kaplan, saying "Facebook also needs to act now to calm the situation."

Actor Sacha Baron Cohen has been an outspoken critic of Facebook and Trump, and he tweeted after the platform banned the president that "every social media company, every online platform, every advertiser has a choice: Stand with Trump and the domestic terrorists who attacked the Capitol."

Roger McNamee, an early investor in Facebook and Google, told CNBC Wednesday that social media companies' business model of amplifying content like hate speech and conspiracy theories is to blame for the events at the Capitol. "Its the amplification of dangerous content that I would like to restrict, because that's simply a business model choice," he said.

Youtube, Twitter, and Facebook all removed a video of Trump disputing election results without evidence and calling the rioters "very special."  Facebookhas since blocked Trump indefinitely, at least through the end of his term. Twitter locked Trump's account until he deleted three tweets that violated the platform's policy. He has since deleted the tweets, which led to a 12 hour ban. Youtube introduced new rules that accounts that violate Youtube policies three times in 90 days will be permanently removed.

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