If you have a Whole Foods store in your area, then you’ve probably shopped here already. If there’s no Whole Foods where you live, you might not have to wait much longer as they’re already opening new locations in New Jersey, Illinois, and Los Angeles, so they might be coming your way too in the near future.
What’s good about Whole Foods
To everyone who’s shifted from conventional food towards more natural and healthier options, Whole Foods is the place.
- The place to find food that is sourced more sustainably;
- The place where labeling is more transparent;
- The place where natural meat means animals were fed more natural and organic;
- The place where you know where your seafood comes from;
- The place where you can be more confident about purchasing more natural beauty and personal care items;
- The place to find more affordable vegetarian and vegan options;
- The place where private label items deliver quality equal or close to national brand items.
What’s not so good about Whole Foods
In all fairness, Whole Foods does have its setbacks too. And it’s “more” and not “all” natural and affordable because of several reasons.
- For one, affordable isn’t exactly cheap, but we’re talking about organic items, which are always pricier, so in those terms, they do deliver somewhat good value for money.
- Secondly, they’re retailers in the food retailing business, and the organic industry has probably never presented so much potential to mainstream retailers as today, which makes it highly competitive.
Looking to expand the business and increase sales, retailers might play on people’s fears pushing information about going organic, stating that conventional is bad, and natural is good etc. Whole Foods does it too, and as much as we’d like to believe they do so for ethical reasons, they clearly have reasons to be biased too.
- Third, Whole Foods might not stock items with aspartame, artificial colors and an array of other harmful ingredients, but they do carry brands that are known to have caused controversy in the past regarding GMOs. A few years ago, Kashi brand that Whole Foods carries came under the spotlight because of apparently deceiving “natural” labeled items.
The truth is that caution and extra research is required whenever organics are involved, even at Whole Foods.
Just because supermarkets or specialty stores market items as natural and organic groceries, they might still hide secrets. Questioning the integrity of an organic label is all about being an alert, and ultimately an informed consumer. Natural labeled items, for example, mean just about nothing nowadays from a food science perspective whereas organic label items do have to meet certain standards to be qualified as such.
Overall, Whole Foods remains one of the best places to shop when switching to healthy or healthier. They’ve at least made a step forward from conventional and perhaps more food retailers will follow their example and they themselves will work towards an even better and consumer oriented business model.