You would not have believed it from his genial countenance, but shortly before NFU supremo Ben Gill met food chain leaders at London's New Connaught Rooms he had been turned purple with apoplexy. The source of his anger? Someone had placed bottles of Irish water for the delectation of the British food chain's great and good. Mind you, a swift word from Ben and vast quantities of Highland Spring appeared as if by magic. Later on in the week, Richard Izard, commercial director for Entertainment UK, was addressing a Tesco conference for suppliers who had previously been warned to turn all mobiles off. Izard was in mid-flow when the shrill tones of a phone rang round the hall. "There's always one isn't there?!" he joked. But as the ringing continued, Izard's smile faded. "It's my phone isn't it?" he asked a now mirthful room. Indeed it was. At the same conference, television chef Jamie Oliver shocked the audience by appearing on a Tesco corporate video ­ but he hadn't defected. Instead, the boy wonder was thanking the chain for supporting his Naked Chef books. Meanwhile, Mars sent an army of smiling PR girls to show off its latest Christmas range to journalists and their families at fun-filled Thorpe Park in Surrey. Unfortunately, 90 degree-in-the-shade heat meant it was a toss-up for which looked more jaded ­ the child-thumbed chocolates or the hacks being dragged from ride to ride by their tireless offspring. {{COUNTERPOINT }}