photography by WHOLE FOODS MARKET
The much-discussed acquisition of Whole Foods by Amazon was made official on August 28, and with that comes news of another surprising (and welcome) change hitting the supermarket. Effective immediately, the famously high Whole Foods prices will be cut in a bid to make the chain more accessible to everyone.
“We’re determined to make healthy and organic food affordable for everyone. Everyone should be able to eat Whole Foods Market quality—we will lower prices without compromising Whole Foods Market’s long-held commitment to the highest standards,” Jeff Wilke, the CEO of Amazon Worldwide Consumer, said in a statement.
That’s right. “Whole Paycheck” no more: You’ll now be able to buy all the organic avocados and responsibly-farmed tilapia you need without having to take out a second mortgage.
While we don’t know exactly how drastic these price cuts will be, expect them to take effect across all the bestselling grocery staples. Produce, meats, fish, and dairy items will all be among the discounted items, therefore making it easier for people to eat organic and not sacrifice quality for price.
Amazon-friendly prices aren’t the only changes coming as a result of the $13.7 billion deal, either: The online retail giant’s presence will be felt more literally in Whole Foods, too. Amazon Lockers, a delivery system that allows customers to pick up their products at a destination instead of having them shipped to their homes, will be available in select Whole Foods stores.
Amazon Prime members will also be getting special perks in the supermarket, as Prime becomes part of Whole Foods Market’s customer rewards program. Customers will also be able to find all Whole Foods brands—such as 365 Everyday Value, Whole Foods Market, Whole Paws, and Whole Catch—online via Amazon.com, AmazonFresh, Prime Pantry, and Prime Now.
“By working together with Amazon and integrating in several key areas, we can lower prices and double down on that mission, and reach more people with Whole Foods Market’s high-quality, natural, and organic food,” said Whole Foods CEO and co-founder John Mackey. “As part of our commitment to quality, we’ll continue to expand out efforts to support and promote local products and suppliers.”
Given Amazon’s interest in the food industry—the company is rumored to be launching a meal delivery service in the near future—these changes are to be expected. But don’t worry, Whole Foods fans: While structural changes are being made, the actual products will remain untouched. Your umeboshi plums aren’t going anywhere any time soon.
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