Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

 

448 Comments

Comments

K Hiatt says ...
"Rumor No. 3: Whole Foods Market recently decided to start selling food with GMOs." "Wrong again! As long as GMO crops have been in this country, GMOs have been in the US food supply." When you deny that you haven't recently decided to sell GMO foods, does that mean you've been selling them all along since they've always been in the food supply? Aren't you just denying that the decision was made recently? Does Whole foods sell GMO products or not? That's what people want to know...
02/02/2012 5:12:40 PM CST
Stacy says ...
This makes me so happy! Keep the GMO out of our food supply! I went into my local Whole Food's today and asked these questions as I saw an article that made me sick, and the man in the produce department was very helpful and explained to me that the story was completely false! SO glad to know that we can still count on you Whole Food's for clean food!
02/02/2012 5:06:43 PM CST
Caryl says ...
This states what Whole Foods didn't or hasn't done, but what DID WF do with regards to Monsanto. Please state the entire story so that the information you ate providing is clear. I have many friends and neighbors who work in the corporate offices of Whole Foods - in Austin. I shop at the mother ship store no less than 8-10 times A WEEK. If you can't be completely truthful about what's going on I can't give you my money. There is a certain responsibility that WF has to its customers- from the food and goods that you sell and what you claim is in them and not and where they come from - in reality WF is no different than any other chain of grocery stores. With the acceptions of your prices over theirs. I am 100% willing to pay more for organic, clean, healthy, chemically free food. Prove you haven't made a deal with the devil. Until then, farmers markets here I come. Peace.
02/02/2012 11:52:40 AM CST
Brian S says ...
When I fist heard of this back in 2010, I was shocked. I've been in the anti-GMO movement for well over 15 years and this "news" took me aback for a moment. I had been a shopper at Whole Foods for a very long time and I could not believe my ears. Now, being one to research the hell out of EVERYTHING to the n'th degree, I decided to hold judgment until I was able to do a massive amount of research on this, however, and this is a very big however… I could best describe how this hit me as though, let's say, you're in a 30 year relationship with a woman/man, and you hear from a best friend of that person that your love has been cheating on you. While deep in your heart of hearts, you know this may not be true, it still hits you like a freight train and it's THAT very point where, if you don't get some proof over a set period of time that the message is not true, it will, then, be accepted as truth to a degree of varying measure. Therefore, Whole Foods, I have to be honest with you, I put much of the blame on you for this rumor metastasizing into an almost malignant tumor, and here's why (and I can say this confidently because I've been in Advertising & Marketing for 20 years with big firms around the PR industry, so I know a thing or two about how PR works): 1: I had not seen one iota of fight from you when this rumor first started, and it was WIDELY publicized, so there's no way you could not have known about it, especially since you posted that letter from your CEO on your website immediately afterwards. 2: Knowing that you knew this rumor had started, you didn't do ANY massive outreach against this rumor OR GMO's on a national level, no media, no TV, no radio, no social media; WF did nothing big to thwart this. 3: Knowing that you spend a lot of money on your marketing, I can only blame you that you didn't realize that something like this would grow into a massive tumor. Whomever your marketing and PR people are, and even management, I'd fire them for not stepping up and fighting to make this a TOP priority on your agenda for smashing the rumor. 4: Still, as of this point, you've done nothing major to thwart this, and again, simply post a letter on your website. Whole Foods, you started your business son the notion that eating healthy is a way of life to be followed, and this should be your time to stand up and fight harder than ever to prove that, a flurry of punches is coming your way, yet you're running to the corner of the ring in hopes that the opponent will simply give up. You could come out on top and be the bastion of health & wellness, or you can be that wimpy guy who walks around and receives compliments for even stepping into the ring, but behind your back the whisperings & chuckles of getting your rear end beat into oblivion. WF, you've lost a lot in your thinking that this would "just go away" and that the truth would show it's face. People don't want the truth, that's why they watch reality TV, reality to most is whatever they are told it is. So tell it, tell it truthfully, tell it powerfully, and be forthright in doing so! You have everything to gain and nothing to lose, except dollars, which are really worth nothing, after-all.
02/02/2012 11:53:49 AM CST
janejohnson says ...
@Jay Currently the only item we source organically from China are the 365 Organic Edamame. However, since we love to offer options, we also provide our customers with American sourced organic edamame, as well.
02/02/2012 11:58:37 AM CST
Cynthia Clemente says ...
I do not believe in the above rumors. The moment I see it in facebook..i hide it or deleted the posting. Whole Foods mission statement includes feeding the world with healthy food...how can Whole Foods be in the same sentence as Monsanto, which alter the natural food with GMO? I thin the people from Monsanto themselves are starting this ridiculous rumor.
02/02/2012 12:09:48 PM CST
Becky Cortino says ...
TY for this update and putting this misinformation to rest. I can't imagine how anyone could think GMO/Monsanto buyout was true, with the Whole Foods' company philosophy and approach. I think the greater good will be served when we all focus our efforts on GMO-labeling issues. Glad to know more about Whole Foods' Non-GMO Project verification program -- thank you! Standing for truth in labeling http://www.JustATasteHurts.com
02/02/2012 12:26:16 PM CST
Reese says ...
So, to be clear, you have always carried products that contain GMOs because they are so widespread, yes? And I have to point out that just because something is registered with the Non-GMO project doesn't mean it doesn't contain GMO's, it can mean the company is committed to taking steps in that direction is all, yes? So your 365 products are sourced to avoid GMO's but you were not clear as to whether or not they actually contain them. It sounds like you don't entirely know and it's totally possible.
02/02/2012 12:58:23 PM CST
Charla says ...
Everyone is a critic and so quick to tell you what you should or should not do. I just want to say Thank You for clarifying the truth behind these rumors. Keep up the good work you are doing. We love to shop at Whole Foods and will continue to do so knowing that your goal is in line with our goals for safe, healthy food choices.
02/02/2012 12:58:57 PM CST
kamila says ...
What I believe is that they are products that Whole Foods carry that contain GMO, that is why they recommend to buy organic which by law can't carry GMO.
02/02/2012 1:11:05 PM CST
Lisa says ...
To be clear ~ the 365 value brand (non-organic) products DO NOT have GMOs. The product I am specifically thinking of is the cheese puffs (which are corn-based).
02/02/2012 1:15:17 PM CST
L Baugh says ...
Thanks so much.
02/02/2012 1:39:02 PM CST
Adam says ...
85% of Whole Foods sales are NOT organic, yet they still charge a "premium" price as if they were. The average person mistakes "natural" for "organic". You bank off of this misconception. This is one reason why people are not happy with Whole Foods. The other reason (which you did not address), is the fact that you have announced that your support for "co-existence" between GMO and organic food. This is the reason why people are upset, not any of the rumors you mentioned. Any well-informed individual knows that there can never be co-existence with organic and GMO because GMO crops destroy organic crops. GMO crops cross-pollinate with organic. The herbicides and pesticides like Round Up destroy organic crops. It also destroys soil, rendering farmland useless. Address the real issue, which is that Whole Foods gave their approval of GMOs. This is essentially standing aside and allowing Monsanto to swoop in and rid the world of organic food. But what does Whole Foods care if 85% of their food is non-organic? When there is no more organic food, they will just label everything "natural" and keep charging a premium price as if it were organic, just like the Fresh Market and other "green" food stores.
02/02/2012 1:46:36 PM CST
paig292 says ...
@Lisa It's best to check the list of Non-GMO products for your stores. All of our 365 Everyday Value products are enrolled with the Non-GMO Project and many have already received their verfication. Other products take more time for the Non-GMO Project to do their verification work. I'm asking specifically about the cheese puffs and will let you know what I find out. Enter your store info on this page http://wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/ then scroll down the left navigation to the "Non-GMO Verified Products List." Thanks.
02/02/2012 2:02:07 PM CST
mom said says ...
Thanks for the post and clearing the air. I'll share your info.
02/02/2012 2:03:12 PM CST
paig292 says ...
@Adam An outright ban on GE alfalfa was never an option in Washington! The USDA presented the industry with only two options that they were considering– deregulation and deregulation with restrictions. Given the pervasive planting of GE crops in the U.S. – 93% of soy, 86% of corn, 93% of cotton and 93% of canola seed planted were genetically engineered in the U.S. in 2010 – the option of an outright ban was not on the table. Whole Foods Market — along with the National Cooperative Grocers Association, the National Organic Coalition, the Organic Trade Association, and other companies and groups — endorsed the path of deregulation with restrictions, or coexistence, not because it was a perfect path, but because it was a path to create meaningful change right now in the regulating of genetically engineered foods and the protection of non-GE foods. We encourage you to follow the links in the post to learn more.
02/02/2012 2:12:14 PM CST
janejohnson says ...
@Teresa Please read the above responses from Paige Brady.
02/02/2012 3:37:57 PM CST
paig292 says ...
@renaldoo We have sourced to avoid GMOs for many years in our 365 products. Non-GMO Project verification is a formal way of verifying this commitment. Simply because a product is in the middle of the verification process does not mean that it contains GMOs. Have you looked at a list of the Non-GMO products in our stores? The 10 page list of products in our Austin store seems more than a "small minority." http://wholefoodsmarket.com/specialdiets/SW_LMR_Non_GMO_Verified_Products.pdf
02/02/2012 3:39:51 PM CST
paig292 says ...
@Sangho Lee The best way to ensure that the animals did not receive GMO feed is to purchase organic meats. You can also look for meat from 100% pastured-raised animals. Yes, we are also concerned about BPA and have worked with our suppliers to strongly encourage the transition to non-BPA materials where functional alternatives exist. Check out <a href="http://blog.wholefoodsmarket.com/2010/01/the-fda-changes-its-tune-on-bisphenol-a/" rel="nofollow">this blog post on the details</a> and you can also review <a href="http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/products/bisphenol-a.php" rel="nofollow">our webpage about BPA</a>.
02/10/2012 10:59:21 AM CST
paig292 says ...
@Shelly The product tested, 365 Everyday Value Corn Flakes, was discontinued in June 2011 (before these tests came out) and has been replaced with 365 Everyday Value <strong>Organic</strong> Corn Flakes. Because we prefer to source organic grocery products, the conventional product was discontinued and replaced with organic cereal. For a list of the many Non-GMO Project-verified products available at our stores, check your local store’s web site: www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores.
02/10/2012 10:11:19 AM CST
Dee says ...
I never believed any of the rummors! Sure wish you would come to Lakeland, FL and give Publix some competition!!! I hate having to drive an hour to get to a Whole Foods! Dee
02/10/2012 7:56:52 AM CST
Brad Attig says ...
WF can do more. Creating a Non-GMO label on the surface seems like a good idea but the burden falls on individuals and small businesses that don't use GMO's and is a specific tactic to increase their operating expenses thus increasing costs to the public. This inevitably works in the favor of the large and close to monopolistic corporations since the cost of bringing GMO products to market relative to non-GMO's will appear even lower. Come on, the vast majority of Americans favor labeling products with GMO's. Most countries in Europe require it. This is a cop-out by WF. Put your market power where it does the most good for your customers. Simple adopt a policy that anything sold in WF that contains GMO's must be labeled as such. Companies complain, buy elsewhere. WF will get more publicity for free than they know what to do with and the resultant firestorm will encourage others to follow. Imagine if Wal-Mart followed suit? Bye-Bye GMO's..... As a result, the cost difference will narrow and with any luck Monsanto's profits will as well. That is how the market takes care of Robber Barons....
02/09/2012 5:26:08 PM CST
ConnieSue Dickinson says ...
Sell out is more like it and Whole Foods continues to defend themselves... they started out a wholesome source for good food, they they went big and corporate and greedy http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_24844.cfm
02/09/2012 12:36:09 PM CST
Sangho Lee says ...
Thank you for the clarification. My first question is when we eat meat bought from your store, don't we eat GMO indirectly because the animals were fed GMO? My second question is do you promote "Non-BPA" labeling just as you do with "Non-GMO" labeling? Thank you. Sangho Lee
02/09/2012 9:19:23 AM CST
Jackie says ...
I think the statement to dispel the rumors was a bunch of BS, probably written out by mansanto.
02/09/2012 12:30:22 AM CST

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