Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

We Love Local

By Elizabeth Smith, May 24, 2013  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Elizabeth Smith

BlumettiFrom the beginning, Whole Foods Market® has supported local makers and growers—and they’ve supported us, too. We’ve kept that love alive by filling our aisles with the best that our local communities have to offer – even as we’ve grown.

Today about 25% of the produce sold at our stores comes from local farms, and 10-30% of the products in our aisles come from local producers depending on availability, store size and the needs of the community.

What’s “local”? Our stores across the nation define “local” one community at a time. For some, “local” means within the state, while for others it means within a certain mile radius, which may include a bordering state or two. Also, local ownership is just one part — we look for local manufacturing and/or use of local ingredients, too.

Local yokels. We’re proud to have local foragers, dedicated team members seeking out the best local products all over the map, so we can bring more great stuff to our customers and be a community resource for local growers and artisans.

LPLPStarting small with big dreams. Through our Local Producers Loan Program, we’ve committed $10 million in low-interest loans for local producers. These loans help small independent producers expand their businesses, a real win-win!

How can I sell my product at Whole Foods Market? We may be big, but our vendor partners don't have to be; some partners sell to hundreds of stores while others only sell to one. Interested? Here are the steps:

  1. Find out if we’re the right retailer partner for your product by reviewing our Quality Standards.  
  2. We buy products by store and region – it doesn’t all have to go through our headquarters! If your product meets our Quality Standards, contact your local regional office.
  3. The regional office will direct you to the local forager or regional buyer for your next steps. Every region has a different review process.

Feather BelleLocal matters. In your closest Whole Foods Market, you’ll discover the best of your local community. Buy local to:

  • Support local farmers and food artisans, and their families
  • Strengthen local economies
  • Connect to the seasons, regional varieties and the people who grow your food
  • Reduce the environmental impact of transporting goods to market

What’s your favorite local product at your Whole Foods Market store?

 

 

Category: Local

 

10 Comments

Comments

marmaladesky says ...
Vegan muffins. :)
05/29/2013 5:03:38 AM CDT
Christine says ...
Thank you, Whole Foods, for committing to this very important cause!
05/29/2013 6:27:16 PM CDT
Monal says ...
Please start carrying local organic milk, preferably cream top! I've been trying to find it since i had straus organic cream top milk in a glass jar from a Las Vegas whole foods.
05/29/2013 9:01:12 PM CDT
susan bourdon says ...
There is a VERY local farm (Eichner's)within a mile of the North Hills store. They have been there for several generations, as I understand it. They have THE freshest eggs I have ever eaten; white or brown with bright yellow yokes and a fresh taste that awakens any palate, any time of day. Their chickens are thoroughly prepared/dressed-never a drop of blood or other distasteful liquid that most chickens bathe in before they are purchased. They have lots of produce grown organically-each advertised as such. To be on their Thanksgiving turkey list is an enviable status, achieved, I've heard sometimes after waiting for years. They do not sacrifice quality for quantity or financial gain. They are dedicated to serving their customers the best yields from their fields. How dedicated? I bought some pickling cukes once, but they were out of dill. Don (one of the brothers who is affable, chatty with a great sense of humor-mentioned a few words to his sprite 70-ish father who just hopped off his tractor). Mr. Eichner suddenly boarded the tractor and 5 minutes later presented me with a huge "bouquet" of the verdant herb, out of the ground and in my hands within minutes. Fresh? Local? That one act illustrated the desire we all share of wanting to know the farmer who grows your food, where your food is grown and how it is "processed" and delivered to us. I am a regular WF customer, but am baffled there are no Eichner products in your store. When your dill bin is empty, I imagine Mr. Eichner hopping on his tractor and driving down Richard's Road to the farm, a half mile away and re-appearing with that huge bunch of dill. But suddenly I snap back to reality as I hear a produce man wheel up next to me, slash open a box , marked "grown in California", and he starts restocking the bin with some weary looking dill that cant help but show the signs of a 3000 mile trip.
05/30/2013 12:52:48 AM CDT
Erin Hicks says ...
I am so excited that WF has chosen Greenbrier Farms as their South Carolina local pork provider!
05/30/2013 6:36:03 AM CDT
ray kukol says ...
will shop WF more often after learning about this
05/30/2013 8:49:09 AM CDT
Lois Credit says ...
I do shop Whole Food and LOVE IT!!!!!...still learning on the wellness journey. Please help me to understand, other than the obvious to support, why my purchases should be from local vendors. Are the veggies and fruit healthier, less pesticide etc???
05/30/2013 11:33:59 AM CDT
Enjil Harrah says ...
I love the local fruits and vegetables. There is nothing quite like fruit that has spent little time in travel and refrigeration!
05/30/2013 10:35:59 PM CDT
Aimee says ...
While I appreciate Whole Foods supporting local growers and artisans, I wish you would do more. I see far too many "Grown in California" labels on ordinary produce that should be able to be grown in Pennsylvania (where I live). Spinach, tomatoes, etc. In my opinion, everything should be local except products that can't be i.e. bananas or other tropical fruit.
06/08/2013 5:28:03 PM CDT
Lyndell VanMatre says ...
The International cookies are local!
07/11/2013 8:27:55 PM CDT