Massachusetts business in brief

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Sam Adams’ bottle recall costs more than estimated

BOSTON – The total cost of a massive beer bottle recall at The Boston Beer Co. has risen to $20.6 million from a previous estimate of $15 million, largely the result of a bigger-than-expected increase in bottle returns.

The South Boston brewer included the figures in its earnings report on Tuesday for the quarter that ended on June 28. Despite the increase in recall costs, the company saw a 25 percent jump in net income for the quarter: Boston Beer earned $8.5 million compared to $6.8 million in the same period a year ago. The maker of Samuel Adams beers accounted for most of the recall expenses in its first quarter of the year.

Boston Beer first reported the recall on April 7 after an inspection at its Cincinnati plant revealed flaws in some of the bottles from a bottle manufacturer. So far, 925,000 cases of beer have been set aside for destruction because of the recall, including 200,000 that had not been shipped to beer sellers.

Bank warns of identity theft scam

WHITMAN – Mutual Bank issued a warning Tuesday of an apparent identity theft scam involving the unauthorized use of the Whitman-based bank’s name.

An unknown number of cell phone users in the area have received text messages from someone claiming to be from Mutual Bank. The message states that the recipients’ access to their bank account has been locked and provides a number they can call to unlock it. The number leads to a bogus recorded message that asks for a customer’s card and pin number.

Mutual Bank CEO Glen White said the company never uses the Internet or cell phones to solicit information from its customers. White urged anyone who has received text messages claiming to come from Mutual Bank to contact local police.

Boat operator loses surcharge appeal

BOSTON – Massachusetts Bay Lines has lost a legal battle in its fight to keep ticket surcharges off its whale-watch tours and private charters.

The state Appeals Court on Tuesday sided with the state Appellate Tax Board, which had previously ruled that the Boston-based boat operator should include a 5 percent surcharge on its whale-watch tours and private charters.

That decision was based on a state law that requires a surcharge for convention center construction and financing to be applied to any water-based sightseeing or entertainment cruise that is at least partially conducted in Boston. The case began when the state revenue commissioner at the time sent Mass. Bay a notice of intent to assess additional surcharges in 2003 equal to more than $150,000 for unpaid surcharges in the previous three years.

NMT Medical shares drop 16 percent

BOSTON – NMT Medical Inc. shares fell by 16 percent on Tuesday to close at $3.40 a share after the South Boston medical device company reported lower-than-expected revenues. NMT lost $5.6 million in the quarter that ended on June 30, compared with a loss of $2.6 million in the same time a year ago. Product sales, which exclude royalty revenues, fell by more than 9 percent to $4.5 million for the quarter.

Group: Conditions for race dogs cruel

SOMERVILLE – The Committee to Protect Dogs, the Somerville-based organization behind a ballot question to ban greyhound racing in the state, released an 82-page report on Tuesday chronicling what the group describes as “cruel” conditions in the state’s dog racing industry amid declining revenues. The report said the amount gambled at Wonderland Greyhound Park in Revere dropped by 65 percent from 2002 levels to $33.8 million in 2007, while gambling revenue at Raynham Park dropped 37 percent from 2002 to $116.8 million in 2007.