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Amazon is nudging Whole Foods a little closer to half paycheck

Amazon is nudging Whole Foods a little closer to half paycheck
[Photo: Flickr user Roland Klose]

That didn’t take very long: After quick regulatory approval of Amazon’s $13.4 billion Whole Foods acquisition, the grocery store said in a statement this morning that it will start slashing prices on Monday.

  • Prices will drop on “Whole Trade bananas, organic avocados, organic large brown eggs, organic responsibly-farmed salmon and tilapia, organic baby kale and baby lettuce, animal-welfare-rated 85% lean ground beef, creamy and crunchy almond butter, organic Gala and Fuji apples, organic rotisserie chicken, 365 Everyday Value organic butter, and much more.”

To no one’s surprise, the deal will also help the commerce giant capitalize on Whole Foods’ precious real estate, and bring a closer tie-up between the two companies’ businesses—another sign of Amazon’s many-tentacled ambitions.

  • After “certain technical integration work is complete,” Amazon Prime will become Whole Foods Market’s customer rewards program, “providing Prime members with special savings and other in-store benefits.”
  • Additionally Whole Foods’s private label products will be available through Amazon.com, AmazonFresh, Prime Pantry and Prime Now.
  • And Amazon Lockers will be placed in “select” Whole Foods stores. Customers can have products shipped from Amazon.com to their local Whole Foods Market store for pick up or send returns back to Amazon during a trip to the store.”

The quick approval by the feds was surprising to some, given, among other things, what the president has said about Amazon and that the FTC was just a month ago reported to be investigating worries that the merger would hurt competition in the grocery market and negatively impact access to grocery stores in poor neighborhoods where healthy choices are already harder to come by.

One immediate impact of today’s announcement: Shares of grocery store companies began to plunge:

Among the many changes the merger now seems certain to usher in: That old suburban joke, about Whole Foods being “more like Whole Paycheck,” just won’t have quite the same meaning anymore.

RelatedAmazon’s Grocery Ambitions Are Far Bigger Than Whole Foods and Now That Whole Foods Belongs To Amazon, What Happens To Conscious Capitalism?CGW