Community Partnerships in Carmel, Indiana

Whole Foods Market is a company with a conscience. We believe companies, like individuals, must assume their share of responsibility as tenants of Planet Earth. We believe passionately in supporting the Carmel community and are actively involved by:

Donating goods and services to local organizations
Sponsoring community events and health fairs
Educating adults and children with interactive tours of the store
Hosting adult cooking classes


Our Community Support (5%) Days are one meaningful way we give back to our community. On designated days throughout the year a total of 5% of the day’s sales are donated to local 501c3 non-profit organizations. Customers help support our selected organizations just by shopping on these 5% Days.


Our One Dime at a Time program provides an incentive to our customers to eliminate single-use plastic bags and develop stronger communities all at the same time. At the register, customers will have the option to receive a 10 cent per bag refund as cash back off their receipt or they can choose to donate it to that quarter’s selected local non-profit.


We are excited to be able to help the Carmel community with a variety of partnership opportunities throughout the year, including:

Event Assistance (single event or a series of events)
Donations (usually product donation for charity purposes)

All requests are reviewed on a monthly basis and recipients will be notified as soon as possible. Please be advised that due to the large volume of requests that we receive, we require a minimum of 6-8 weeks advanced notice for any donation. Unfortunately, we can not honor every request and will only contact you if we can provide a donation for your organization. If you are interesting in applying for a donation/sponsorship/invitation to a health fair or other event, please visit our stores to pick up a Donation Application. Applications are available in store across from Register Number 3. Completed applications can be turned in at the Customer Service Desk. Having our applications only available in store ensures that we are supporting events/causes that our customers are passionate about.

We are delighted to work with many local food pantrys to get healthy foods into the hands of local folks in need. Some of the local groups we work with include Second Helpings, The Food Link, Bread of Life Food Pantry & more! Additionally, each holiday season we raise money for a local food rescue organization.

We are proud to support our local schools through many avenues including our fundraising program each fall through the Whole Kids Foundation, where we raise money (and local schools apply) to receive a grant for a salad bar and/or school garden! You can learn more and get lots of parent & school-friendly resources at Check out one of our local recipients, Maple Glen Elementary School.

Did you know we offer FREE field trips for school age children? They make great school field trips and scout activities, too. Let us help you with your Healthy Eating badge! Kids will learn about the importance of organic foods, the different food groups, and how to make healthy food choices. The field trip includes stops in each department, samples and a complimentary age-appropriate goodie bag. Field Trips are appropriate for kids ages 7+. We require chaperones and a minimum of 8 people. In addition, we have some optional add-on extras (provided to us by the Girl Scouts of Central Indiana) for Girl Scout field trips. To schedule a field trip for our Carmel, Indiana location, call Sarah Smith at 317.569.1517. To schedule a tour at any other Whole Foods Market, please contact that store directly.


Are you interested in an outing for your group? Cooking Classes and Store Tours make great outings for your business, volunteer group, club, or simply to enjoy with friends. See the various store tour topics we offer below.

Budget Cents Store Tour
Eating great food doesn't have to break your budget. We offer real food, free of artificial ingredients and trans fats, at the best possible prices. Take our tour and get valuable tips on stretching your dollar, an overview of the great values we offer every day, enjoy samples AND take home a goody bag!

Smart Shopper Tour
Want to make healthier choices, but don't know where to start? This store tour is for you! Sarah Smith will show you how to shop smart and dish out some samples too! Learn how to label read, when to buy organic, what questions to ask your butcher, how to choose healthy snacks, the importance of eco-cleaners, all-natural body care products, fiber and more!

Healthy Eating Store Tour
Are you a fan of the movie Forks Over Knives, eating unprocessed foods, and avoiding oils? You will enjoy this tour. Does that sound strange to you, but you're curious? Join us! Watching the movie before the tour, will help answer lots of questions. Then, let us inspire you to make it work!
Did you know that the power of your fork may override your genes? A plant-based lifestyle may decrease the risk of heart disease & other diseases AND plants typically have less calories & fat than processed foods. Join Sarah Smith to learn about eating whole foods, plant-based & nutrient-dense. We’ll cover a range of healthy-eating topics such as organic vs. conventional, greens, label-reading, enriched vs. whole grains, processed vs. unprocessed foods, hydration, fiber & more!

Vegan Store Tour
Veg-curious? Learn about the tasty vegan options throughout the store! We'll cover hot topics including organics, whole grains, TVP, nutritional yeast, awesome snacks, dairy & meat alternatives, cruelty-free products, resources & supplements. Tour includes samples, goody bag & a Vegetarian Starter Kit (booklet with lots of great health info & recipes). Previous tour attendees recommend bringing a pen & notebook.

Gluten Free Store Tour
Are you living the gluten free (GF) lifestyle and not sure what to eat? Join Sarah Smith to learn about all of the great GF products available in each department, learn how to label read, find out what resources are available & enjoy samples too!

We can also tailor a store tour (minimum 8 people) or cooking class (minimum 10 people) to your interest. If you're group is smaller than 8-10 people, you will see the tour topics above rotate seasonally on our events calendar. Feel free to attend any one of our monthly scheduled store tours or cooking classes. Custom tour/class dates and times are subject to availability.

Custom/Private Tour FAQ: 

  • Each tour includes samples as well as a complimentary goodie bag.  
  • Each tour lasts 60-90 minutes. We strongly recommend the 90 minute over the 60 minute tour. (We have done many custom tours for groups and have found that both organizers and attendees prefer the more in-depth 90 minute tour, especially once they've experienced both.)
  • There is no charge for custom group tours, as long as we receive a minimum of 8 people. This means, that it is best to take RSVPs for at least 12 people, in case anyone backs out at the last minute. (Tour maximum is 15-20 people. The group coordinator can accept RSVPs for around 22 people, because inevitably not everyone will show. If everyone does show, we are happy to accommodate.)
  • For custom tours, the group coordinator, is in charge of taking RSVPs and gathering food allergy information from each attendee.
  • We recommend that groups schedule 8 weeks before their desired month of the event. To schedule, please call Sarah Smith at 317.569.1517.

Custom/Private Class FAQ: 

  • Each class lasts 90 minutes and includes samples and recipes. Have attendees come ready to taste 2-3 samples, but we won’t be serving dinner. Attendees may want to grab a bite to eat before/after the class.
  • There is no charge for private, custom cooking classes, as long as we receive a minimum of 10 people. This means, that it is best to take RSVPs for 14+ people, in case anyone backs out at the last minute. (Class maximum is 20 people. There is no flexibility on the maximum number.)
  • The group coordinator is in charge of taking RSVPs.
  • We recommend that groups schedule 8 weeks before their desired month of the event. To schedule, please call Sarah Smith at 317.569.1517.
  • We charge a cancellation fee of $150 for any custom, private class that is cancelled. Our instructors reschedule their work to accommodate our requests, and we spend time coordinating the details, in store personnel, budgeting and blacking out the event date on our calendar for other events. The cancellation fee guarantees that the group is doing their best to meet our minimum requirements.

Feedback from Smart Shopper Tour:

  • “I really enjoyed it and learned a lot of stuff I didn’t know before. It was fun that it was interactive (including the tasting samples!!). I think the length was perfect, too. Sometimes I just have a hard time switching gears, especially in the middle of the day. So, I think the length was perfect for just having a short break and being refreshed with some new info!”—Amy R. (Her business opted for a private 60 minute tour in the afternoon 12-1pm)
  • “I liked the whole thing! Generally speaking, I enjoyed it because it confirmed rationale for things that I am already doing and provided some ideas for additional healthy lifestyle options that I can incorporate into my life. Specifically, my favorite piece was the “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean 15” info because that is helpful at any store.”—Tiffany H.
  • “Today’s tour was very informative and I learned a few new things. I also thought the goodie bag was nice to give us an opportunity to try new things.”—Michelle K.
  • “I really enjoyed this outing. I learned a lot of new information that will change some of my shopping habits. I wasn’t sure if I should go because we are so busy right now, but I was really glad I went.”—Danette B.
  • “I thought that the tour was informative. I think that Sarah was passionate about a healthy, environmentally friendly lifestyle, but I did not feel that she was pushing anything on us. I liked that there were some samples.”—Jennifer F.

Feedback from the Shopping on a Budget Tour:

  • “It was awesome!”—Debbie R.
  • “I loved it. Very informative and Sarah did an excellent job. I am looking forward to the next one.”—Deborah W.
  • “I have been to Whole Foods a few times before, and it can be a little intimidating to see all of these different brands of foods you are not accustomed to seeing in other grocery stores. Especially being a fairly recent college graduate who is living my own for the first time, the whole meal planning and grocery shopping experience, especially just for yourself, can be quite overwhelming. This tour provided me with great information and tips for eating better and grocery shopping cost-effectively. I look forward to the next tour focused on nutrition.”—Stephanie P.
  • “Thank you so much for this tour, it was REALLY informative and fun!!”—Julie M.
  • “I really enjoyed today and was able to absorb more of the information Sarah was giving us because of going to the [Smart Shopper] tour. The [Smart Shopper] tour was great but since it was so new to me I couldn’t process all the information thrown at us. I shop there bi-weekly now and love their products, especially the produce section.”—Karen B.
  • “The tour was terrific! Sarah was enthusiastic and had great practical tips to help stretch the grocery budget. I am so glad that I attended and look forward to the [next] tour.”—Robyn S.
  • “I really enjoyed Sarah’s presentation! She was very knowledgeable and had lots of great tips for smart shopping, and where to find the best deals in the store. They really seem to have a genuine appreciation for their customers that goes above and beyond what you find in other grocery stores. I love their willingness to customize certain items to tailor to individual customer’s needs!”—Elizabeth T.