Restaurants aren’t the only businesses catering to millennials. Whole Foods Market announced it will be creating a sister chain of grocery stores with lower prices that will be, in the words of Whole Foods’ Co-founder and Co-Chief Executive John Mackey, “hip, cool and tech-oriented,” according to The Wall Street Journal.
There aren’t many details about the new stores yet. No name for them has been announced, and no locations have been revealed, although the company is currently signing leases.
The store will complement Whole Foods’ existing brand, “targeting a different type of customer: millennials who are too cost-conscious to shop at the current ones but want the high standards of food quality and ethics that Whole Foods is known for.”
Whole Foods has already made changes to its original brand to entice more customers. In its low-income area stores, the company lowers its prices slightly. It’s adding more store brands with lower prices than national brands. It’s also piloting a customer rewards program in certain regions where Whole Foods purchases can earn shoppers products or rewards. The rewards program uses an app, so shoppers can keep track of their rewards on their mobile devices.
Sales of natural and organics continues to rise. Demand for organic milk caused a shortage earlier this year. Sustainably, humanely raised meat, like beef, continues to be a priority with many consumers. But, with more and more grocery stores such as Trader Joe’s, Wegmans, Target and Walmart offering organic and natural foods as consumer demand for them increases, Whole Foods isn't the only place for consumers to buy them anymore. The competition for the conscious shopper's dollar is getting stiffer all the time. It may seem like creating a sister chain with lower prices only increases that competition, but Mackey doesn’t see it that way. “We want to underscore we see this as an ‘and’ to our Whole Foods Market brand, and not an ‘or,’” he said.
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