Originally published October 21 2014
Survey reveals huge differences in cost of organic foods from Whole Foods and other stores
by Julie Wilson staff writer
(NaturalNews) As much as we all love organic foods, there's times when we certainly don't love the price. While many of us make sacrifices in other areas of our lives in order to afford splurging a little more on good food, you may not have to if you're willing to expand the horizon of grocery stores in which you shop, particularly if its whole foods.
An Austin-based grocer, Whole Foods, is one of the first all-natural food store chains to make healthy living and eating trendy. Its varied selection of all-natural food and personal care products has attracted Austin hipsters, California health-crazed trendies and foodies from all over the country.
Despite love from trendsetters, the grocer has been accused of some not so morally sound tactics.
Aside from the fact the supermarket has lied repeatedly about their products containing GMOs, and most recently were caught selling yogurt advertised as having 2 grams of sugar per cup when it really had 11.4 grams per cup.
For most of us, this probably isn't new news, however, I bet you'll be surprised to learn how much more their products cost compared with other regional grocers.
Whole Foods vs. traditional supermarkets, the latter takes the cake in pricing
A new survey conducted by Wolfe Research discloses the real cost difference between Whole Foods and other grocery stores. The so-called "premier research boutique" purchased 60 to 72 items from Whole Foods, comparing them with other U.S. grocers.
The stores used for comparison included a Houston, Texas HEB, a Wegmans Food Markets located in Washington D.C. and a Chicago Mariano's.
Natural and organic items purchased from HEB totaled significantly lower compared with the exact same items bought from Whole Foods. The items purchased from HEB totaled just over $215, while the same groceries from Whole Foods cost a little under $260; roughly $45 more.
Natural and organic items purchased from Mariano's cost $230, with identical items costing a little under $275 at Whole Foods, again, about a $45 difference.
Study finds Whole Foods costs about $45 more than other regional grocery stores
Wegmans proved to be a little more costly than HEB and Mariano's, but was still cheaper than Whole Foods. A basket containing natural and organic items from Wegmans cost a bit over $270, compared with identical items from Whole Foods totaling over $300, a difference of roughly $30, according to researchers.
Overall, the Texas-based HEB offered the most affordable food prices for all natural and organic food, as reported by the Daily Mail.
However, in a smaller, separate analysis, Wolfe purchased between 11 and 17 organic or conventional produce items at the three regional grocery stores, comparing them again to Whole Foods.
This time, while HEB and Mariano's prices still remained far more inexpensive compared with Whole Foods' prices, Wegmans ended up being more expensive than the all-natural grocer, but only by a small margin.
Wegmans' items cost just over $40 in this sample, compared with Whole Foods', which totaled about $41.
With a reported increase of just 3.9 percent in sales during the last quarter, compared with an 8 percent increase in the past, experts say pricing is becoming a problem for the national grocery chain.
In addition to that, Whole Foods' stock prices have dropped a whopping 40 percent since late October 2013.
"The emergence of the multi-pronged competitive attack on Whole Foods by generally lower-priced competitors suggests to us that Whole Foods' business model faces a very real, clear and present danger," wrote Wolfe analysts.
Attempting to increase business, Whole Foods intends on starting a loyalty rewards program and marketing it by launching a national campaign, reports say.
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