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Bankers' barista ploy leaves coffee shops with bitter taste

It's only March, but we already have a shoo-in for the most idiotic press release of 2014.

Ulster Bank has been giving away free coffees to customers to promote its mortgage offers, and most reasonable people would have no objection to such a scheme.

However, the Restaurants Association of Ireland's spokesperson raged that "for every cup of coffee Ulster Bank continues to give out free of charge, cafes and restaurants are deprived of their daily income".

The promotion is damaging the very businesses that the bank is claiming to support by depriving them of €5 a day for a short period of time?

Presumably, every hairdressers in Dublin that has offered a similar service for years will be feeling the wrath of the RAI?

Most office canteens offer free coffee to their staff, which means bosses throughout Ireland have been putting cafes and restaurants out of business too.

The RAI is right. This wilful destruction of Ireland's food and beverage business has to stop.

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