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Bloomberg reports that the Teamsters labor union is asking C&W Wholesale Grocers to delay its plans to move the operations of six New Jersey facilities to Pennsylvania, Maryland, Connecticut and Delaware.

According to the story, “Leaders of Teamsters Local 863 — which represents about 1,300 workers at the New Jersey facilities — and a group of elected lawmakers held a news conference Thursday to call on the company to delay the move for 90 days so negotiations could continue. They also released report that estimated the closings would cost $129.9 million in lost sales and $48.9 million in lost profits for local businesses, as well as $11.7 million in lost tax revenue for the state.”

• The Associated Press reports that “Target Corp. has agreed to pay $22.5 million to settle claims that the retailer violated California's hazardous waste laws by improperly disposing of pesticides, bleach and other potentially toxic items ... As part of the deal, Target does not acknowledge any wrongdoing.”

• Tops Friendly Markets, which serves upstate New York and northern Pennsylvania, announced that it is teaming with Smithfield to bring “Paula Deen Live!” - a live version of the Food Network program - to Buffalo, NY on April 20, 2011.

From February 6 through March 5, Tops shoppers can register their BonusCards at www.topsmarkets.com, and every time they check out at any Tops store they’re automatically entered for a chance to win a Paula Deen Live! VIP package, including a meet-and-greet with Paula Deen, an autographed cookbook and two tickets to see Paula Deen Live! on April 20, 2011. Each time Tops shoppers purchase any Smithfield product using their registered Tops BonusCard, they are automatically given 10 extra chances to win.

• The Los Angeles Times reports that “organic, raw and even gluten-free food choices ... are showing up at local pet shops that are looking to distinguish themselves from big-box competitors. After a slowdown in sales of premium-priced food during the recession, independent pet shops said the sector was recovering.”

According to the story, “Nationwide, annual retail sales of organic and natural pet food are expected to grow three times as fast as pet food sales overall through 2015, according to an industry report to be released this week by the Packaged Facts market research company.”
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