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Whole Foods’ Profit Falls 32%

whole-foods2While consumers may tell survey firms they are buying more green items since the recession started, their spending habits tell a different story, at least where organic foods retailer Whole Foods is concerned.

Whole Foods’ profit for the most recent quarter fell 32 percent, from $40 million a year ago to $27 million now, according to WSJ.com.

Total revenue for the 280-store chain was down just 0.5 percent to $1.86 billion, but most troubling was a decrease of 4.8 percent in sales at stores open at least one year.

The retailer projects sales of $8 billion for the year.

Other retailers are feeling the pinch of the economy too. Discount goods retailer Wal-Mart saw its quarterly net sales fall 0.6 percent to $93.47 billion, according to MSNBC.com.

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4 thoughts on “Whole Foods’ Profit Falls 32%

  1. This is poor analysis. Just because people are spending less doesn’t mean they are not buying organic. Maybe, just maybe, they are seeking out cheaper sources of organic food than what they can find at Whole Foods. I’d gladly go to a Trader Joe’s which has routinely lower prices. And there is a much larger amount of organic products at regular grocery stores (Giant/Safeway here in the DC area), even at Costco.

  2. agreed. Whole Foods is about as expensive as you can get. There are other alternatives that are cheaper, and people are buying organics and other similar products elsewhere.

  3. Interesting to hear of Whole Foods woes. Here in Burlington, Vermont, the local food co-op – City Market – continues to thrive. In fact, it is now the second most profitable food co-op in the country. I wonder if a distinction can be made between large scale (even if they are green) food distribution systems like Whole Foods – and smaller, more community based stores – like City Market. I’ve taken several courses at the University of Vermont related to ecological economics and sustainable business and one of the common themes is that of “social capital.” If customers feel connected to a business, or a community – they will show much more dedication to it. The similar premise holds to why locally owned or employee owned business are much less likely to uproot amd migrate – instead, they will be innovate in other ways. This sense of place – of committment to community – is key as we make the transition to a sustainable world – and is an important theme in the courses offered by the Institute for Global Sustainability.

  4. The fact that the CEO has made a point of calling the president “a Facist” in the national media can’t be helping with his customer demographic. I certainly am done with Whole Foods.

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