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Crain’s New York Business reports that Joseph Contorinis, an ex-Jefferies Paragon Fund money manager, will pay an $8.3 million fine to settle an inside trading case that involved him getting non-public information about efforts by Cerberus Capital Management to acquire Albertsons. Contorinis already is serving a six year prison term in the case.

• New York-based Price Chopper Supermarkets has invited colleges and universities throughout its 6-state footprint (CT, MA, NH, NY, PA and VT) to compete in the Fourth Annual “Ultimate Innovation Competition”.  The competition reflects the diversity of skill sets at work in the field of supermarket retailing as it challenges students to develop original and creative solutions and practices in the areas of Retail Store Operations, Supply Chain/Distribution Management (including Warehousing and Transportation),   Merchandising/Marketing (including Advertising or Public Relations) and Human Resources (including Training and Recruiting).

A total of $30,000 in cash prizes is available for distribution amongst the finalists. reports that “overall table wine consumption is up in 2011, with over 291 million cases consumed, according to the Wine Market Council’s annual consumer tracking study on the U.S. wine market ... The consumer tracking study also showed that 21 percent of all adult core wine drinkers, drinkers who consume wine daily or several times a week, represent 47 million people; another 34 million people are marginal wine drinkers, totaling at 81 million wine drinkers in the U.S.

“Only 23 percent of core wine drinkers are high end wine buyers - just under 9 million. But that group accounts for more than 90 percent of all wine purchases over $20. Also, there is a significant male skew to the high end purchaser group.”

• The Wall Street Journal reports that Starbucks has formed “a joint venture with Ai Ni Group, a regional coffee and agricultural company in Yunnan province in Southwestern China, the latest move by the world's largest coffee chain to expand its presence in China. Under the agreement, Starbucks will purchase and export arabica coffee beans and operate coffee mills in the region. Terms of the agreement weren't provided.”

• The Naples News reports that the Coalition of Immokalee Workers plans to sponsor a protest that will have a bout a dozen farmworkers who make a living picking tomatoes riding their bicycles 35 miles to picket the first Trader Joe’s to open in Florida, in North Naples.

According to the story, “the cycling team wants to speak with Trader Joe's vice president Kent Smathers to discuss the importance of signing an agreement to increase farmworkers' pay a penny more per pound of tomatoes picked, as well as only buying from farms that comply with the coalition's Fair Food code of conduct, which is taking effect this season for 90 percent of Florida's tomato fields to better conditions for workers.

“Trader Joe's officials could not be reached for comment Monday morning.”
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