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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Alcohol-free beer is becoming a more common preference in Denmark, according to new supermarket figures. Photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

Sales of alcohol free beer on the up 

Denmark has something of a reputation for being a heavy-drinking nation, but there are signs that some are changing their habits.

Sales of alcohol-free beer at supermarket company Coop doubled between 2013 and 2020, news wire Ritzau reports. Coop owns several major Danish supermarket chains including Irma, SuperBrugsen, Fakta and Kvickly.

“There’s a clear trend in the sales of alcohol-free beer nationally. We’ve seen it with increasing strength from 2013 onwards, and in 2020, which was an unusual year, alcohol-free beer was among the seven product groups which increased the most,” Coop head of information Jens Juul Nielsen told Ritzau.

Better products and choice, as well as increasing focus on health amongst customers, are factors in the trend, Nielsen said.

Potential change to travel guidelines in weekly update

The foreign ministry updates its travel guidelines every Friday, meaning rules affecting whether incoming or returning travellers to Denmark can change, should the country from which they are travelling be given a new colour.

Denmark’s Covid-19 travel guidelines designates countries and regions under four different colour categories: green, yellow orange and red.

Last week’s update saw parts of the UK change to red and a number of popular holiday regions in Greece and Spain switched from green to yellow.

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We’ll report any significant changes once they come in.

Copenhagen Airport baggage handlers resume work after brief action

Baggage handlers from the SGH company resumed work late last night after striking on Thursday, resulting in delays to a number of departures, Ritzau reported.

SGH is one of a number of companies that handle luggage at Copenhagen Airport, meaning some services were affected.

According to union media Fagbladet 3F, the action was taken in protest at a lack of options for workers to plan their schedules and a heavy weighting of weekend and night work.

Mixed weekend weather predicted

If you’re planning a barbecue this weekend, it’s probably a good idea to have it on Saturday.

Today will see a cloudy start clear up with temperatures reaching up to 25 degrees Celsius, while Saturday is expected to bring sunshine and up to 27 degrees, according to national meteorologist DMI.

Wet weather is forecast throughout Sunday, however, with clouds and rain likely from the outset.

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Possible blackouts in Denmark this winter, a significant gas leak off Bornholm, and the health minister's answer to concerns about Covid vaccine underdosing are among the top news stories in Denmark on Tuesday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Electricity blackouts possible in Denmark this winter 

The Danish Energy Agency sees an increased risk that private customers will have their power temporarily cut off — depending on the weather. 

“If we now hit a very hard, cold winter, and the wind is calm at the same time, so we don’t have energy from the wind turbines, then we will be in a place where we have a stressed energy system,” agency director Kristoffer Böttzauw told broadcaster DR. 

However, current weather forecasts suggest the situation isn’t likely to be that dire. Brian Vad Mathiesen, professor of energy planning at Aalborg University, told DR that he considers such shutoffs unlikely. 

The authorities can usually tell about a day in advance if demand is likely to exceed supply, giving them time to make large consumers — on industrial scales — cut down, Ritzau reports. 

But if authorities aren’t successful, there could be blackouts for private customers. They would last two hours at a time for specific areas across the country, and customers aren’t notified in advance. 

READ MORE: Danish heating company asks customers not to turn on heating

Gas leak in Russian pipe off coast of Denmark 

Nord Stream 2, an underwater pipeline created to run gas from Russia to Germany that was shut down before becoming operational, appears to have sprung a leak after an unexplained pressure drop within the pipe. 

Authorities have spotted a “large bubble field near Bornholm”, a Danish island in the Baltic, Nord Stream 2 spokesman Ulrich Lissek told the Agence France-Presse.

Preliminary assessments suggest environmental damage in the area of the leak. 

On Tuesday morning, the Swedish Maritime Administration reported that two additional leaks have been found on sister pipeline Nord Stream 1 — one in Danish waters and another in Swedish territory, but both northeast of Bornholm. 

READ MORE: Germany and Denmark investigate Russian pipeline pressure drop 

Health minister to address Covid vaccine underdosing 

Magnus Heunicke, the Danish minister of health, has convened Parliament’s health rapporteurs to discuss the possibility that millions of people vaccinated for Covid in Denmark received too low a dose. 

An investigation by DR, partnering with the Danish Technological Institute, suggests that instructions provided by Danish health authorities in the hopes of stretching the limited supply of vaccines led to 10 percent underdoses of Pfizer-BioNTech shots. 

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