Theoretically, at least
Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods is expected to close on Monday. The deal will theoretically mean that shoppers can start to expect seeing lower prices on that very day. The price slashing is expected to apply to staples like avocados, crunchy almond butter, baby kale, bananas, organic Fuji apples, and more. Insert prayer hands emoji.
“We’re determined to make healthy and organic food affordable for everyone,” said Jeff Wilke, CEO of Amazon Worldwide Consumer, in a Whole Foods press release. The grocery store, nicknamed “Whole Paycheck," has tried for years to shed the assumption that their prices are significantly higher than competing markets. Though Whole Foods has done some work on their own to be more affordable, Amazon’s acquisition and subsequent price slashing will likely do a lot for Whole Foods’s image.
To add further allure to the deal, Wilke described that Amazon Prime, the company’s $99-per-year membership program, will eventually be implemented into a customer rewards program at Whole Foods. While it will replace the market’s current rewards program, it will make being a Prime member—which already includes two-day free shipping and video streaming—even more beneficial to customers.
It’s clear that Amazon’s dedication to price cuts shows that they hope to become direct competitors with other grocery stores widely considered cheaper than Whole Foods, like Trader Joe’s and Kroger. Amazon’s foray into brick and mortar grocery stores will also address their continual price war with Walmart: While Walmart’s grocery sales are strong, Amazon’s online grocery service, AmazonFresh, which launched in 2007, has mostly fallen flat in terms of consumer impact.
Wilke was also quick to explain that lower prices won’t mean sacrificing quality of produce and other ingredients. “Everybody should be able to eat Whole Foods Market quality,” he said. “We will lower prices without compromising Whole Foods Market’s long-held commitment to the highest standards.”
Will Amazon really commit to lower prices starting next week? Guess you’ll have to head to a Whole Foods on Monday to find out.