19 June 2007

Trust issues at Whole Foods Market

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose...
Organic food grows up: attempts to adopt dominant paradigm...

FTC Says Whole Foods, Wild Oats Merger Unhealthy - Forbes.com
Ruthie Ackerman, 06.05.07, 5:31 PM ET

Whole Foods Market, one of the leading retailers of organic and natural foods, and Wild Oats announced Tuesday that the Federal Trade Commission will file a lawsuit barring Whole Foods from buying its rival because of concern that the acquisition will squash competition in the natural and organic food store market.

The FTC’s position is that the organic food store is its own business and that Whole Foods (nasdaq: WFMI - news - people ) would create a monopoly by buying its competitor. John Mackey, chairman and chief executive officer of Whole Foods Market, said both companies will challenge the FTC’s decision because Whole Foods and Wild Oats (nasdaq: oats - news - people ) are by definition supermarkets. “The FTC has failed to recognize the robust competition in the supermarket industry, which has grown more intense as competitors increase their offerings of natural, organic, and fresh products,” said Mackey.

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