April 1, 2012

John Mackey to launch new, affordable chain of groceries: Whole Foods for All. {April Fool’s edition}

Whole Foods to open up chain of “affordable groceries for middle class.”

Whole Foods opening up a chain of discount groceries, factory outlets, called Whole Foods Within Reach or Whole Mart.

John Mackey of Whole Foods:

“We cater, literally, to the 1%. And maybe the 10% below that.

Now it’s time to do food for the other 89%—not that there’s nearly as much money, proportionally, to be made off of them.

But they’re the kind of liberals and working class people who will be willing to spend more on nice packaging, even if the product is conventional or shipped from China.

Socialists have money, too—it’s a market worth bagging.”

I’ve met John Mackey of Whole Foods a few times. I got to sit down with him in his Boulder, Colorado home (he spends most of his time, I assume, in Austin, where Whole Foods is based) a few years back, and his unique perspective on “green” was inspiring. He views the world sunny-side-up.

That said, in the years since, I’ve written about some of his many foot-in-the-mouth moments—always fairly—I defended him against calls for a boycott a few years back, and that defense was quoted in the NY Times, the Atlantic, and on the front page of Huffington Post. Still, I’ve been one of the more prominent critics out there, and broke (again on the front page of Huffington) the story of his not believing in climate change.

When I heard that Whole Foods was launching a new chain of more affordable groceries—to take on the big chains—I immediately requested an interview. He was in Boulder, again, as luck would have it.

Of course, being that I don’t know anyone at Whole Foods…that despite our being voted #1 in the US for #green on twitter two years running, and having 1.2 million conscious consumer-type readers a month, they’ve never reached out to me for anything other than free publicity…I didn’t hear back.

So there is no interview.


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