Vegan sea urchin will soon start showing up on sushi counters

The meat-free movement is finding its way into strange and exotic dishes. The latest example: imitation uni. Usually, the orange innards of sea urchins served in sushi restaurants are harvested from spiky creatures that live on seabeds. The delicacy requires much labor to collect and keep fresh. That makes it one of the most expensive items on menus; a 100-gram box of top-grade uni from Japan can fetch $47. Japan already consumes 80 percent of the world’s uni, and demand will only climb thanks to sushi’s growing popularity. That’s why Fuji Oil Holdings, maker of processed foods, developed the world’s first imitation uni, using flavored vegetable oils and soy-based ingredients. Connoisseurs seek out uni for its fresh-from-the-sea aroma; the best uni is firm until eaten. Fuji Oil’s version is treated more like an ingredient meant to be used in a variety of dishes. Even so, one Tokyo sushi restaurant expressed an interest in trying it out. Restaurants may eventually have little choice but to add plant-based seafood to menus. Overfishing is a serious concern. — BLOOMBERG NEWS


Reed to announce federal funding for Providence Station

Democratic US Senator Jack Reed is planning to join Amtrak and Rhode Island transportation officials on Monday to announce federal funds to help modernize Providence Station. Reed said the money will help overhaul the station, make interior renovations to expand its footprint to the west, and reuse existing space, while repairing the roof and improving connectivity to Providence. The improvements will also anticipate future growth. Reed earlier helped secure $5.2 million in federal funds for enhancements and $3 million for planning, design, and environmental reviews. Providence Station ranks 11th out of more than 530 Amtrak stations for ridership. State officials said the modernization will benefit about two million annual intercity and commuter rail riders. — ASSOCIATED PRESS



Tesla relaunches solar-panel business with no-contract rentals

Tesla has another new plan to revive its solar division: rentals. The California company is offering no-contract solar-panel packages, according to tweets on Sunday by CEO Elon Musk. “With the new lower Tesla pricing, it’s like having a money printer on your roof,” Musk said in a tweet to those who live in states with high electricity costs. “Still better to buy, but the rental option makes the economics obvious.” Tesla recently reported its third consecutive quarterly decline in solar installations. Less than three years ago it bought SolarCity Corp. for $2.6 billion. The automaker deployed just 29 megawatts in the second quarter — the least yet in a single period. At its height, SolarCity installed more than 200 megawatts over three months. Tesla has made several strategic pivots that have eroded its market share. It ceased door-to-door marketing, ended a partnership with Home Depot, cut jobs, and prioritized direct sales over the no-money-down lease that SolarCity popularized. This year, it shifted to selling standardized panel systems online, rather than the bespoke arrays that have driven the rooftop-solar industry’s US growth. Tesla’s monthly rental includes installation costs, support, and maintenance. The contract can be canceled at any time, though there would be a $1,500 charge to remove the system. — BLOOMBERG NEWS