The total loss for economically active ventures in Latvia in 2009 was 754 million lats (1 billion euros) after tax, according to Central Statistical Bureau data, reports Nozare.lv. Business losses last year are the largest ever recorded. Latvian businesses also operated with losses in 1995 and 1996. Latvian companies were profitable from 1997 through 2008, reporting increasing profits each year. 2007 was the most profitable year, when the total profit of Latvian companies reached 1.6 billion lats. Data on banks, investment brokers, investment management, insurance companies and budgetary organizations are not included in the report.
In the coming months, a project by the Central Union of Farmers will introduce organic milk vending machines in shopping centers so that Estonians can fill reusable bottles with unpasteurized milk, reports LETA. Prices are expected to be 20 percent higher than store-bought milk. Lithuania is already using similar machines, which are sourced from Italy, and have proven to be a success, reported ETV. “We have mapped out all of the country’s organic milk producers that are interested in selling their product through vending machines,” said the farmers’ association representative, Indrek Rohtma. Organizers hope to install around 10 to 20 machines in bigger towns by July.