If you have ever searched for a particular all-natural or whole food item, then you probably ventured to your nearest whole foods store.
You know the one I’m talking about. With the big green and white sign, and deliciously fresh ingredients. There are a few things even the most experienced shoppers don’t know about whole foods.
But first, for those who are not as familiar with the brand…
Whole Foods Market Inc. is an American supermarket chain exclusively featuring foods without artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, sweeteners, and hydrogenated fats
It was founded in Austin, Texas, by four local business-people who decided the natural foods industry was ready for a supermarket. It originally opened in 1980 with a staff of only 19 people. The store, as you can imagine, was an immediate success.
The store’s benefits don’t stop at nutrition, there are some insider secrets you’ll be surprised to learn.
Nine things about Whole Foods:
1. Shop on Wednesdays:
The best day to shop for sales is Wednesday. Wednesday is the day that the stores sale cycle turns over, so there are twice as many sales. So, if you’re looking for a great discount you should shop on Wednesday.
In addition to the in-store sales, there are also many mobile coupons courtesy of the whole foods app. The coupons are updated regularly, and the cashier needs only to scan the bar-code.
2. Returns are welcome:
You can return anything. The return policy is very dependable. Whole foods wants you to enjoy what you purchase so if you aren’t completely satisfied in every way you can return the item. You will either get your money back, or receive store credit depending on the stores location and its policy. You don’t even need the receipt for returns!
3. Best Sellers:
The best-selling seafood item is the responsibly farmed salmon. You can find it in the seafood section and it is the number-one selling seafood item company-wide. The salmon is so popular because it is free of antibiotics, growth hormones, pesticides, and GMOs.
4. The Ingredients matter:
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The whole foods’ company really does take ingredients seriously. They pride themselves on having high standards and sticking to them as much as possible. In fact, I bet you didn’t know there is an entire whole foods team dedicated to using science and research to figure out what can and can’t be in their stores.
“At a minimum, we have no artificial colors, no artificial preservatives, no artificial sweeteners, and no hydrogenated fats. Every single thing in our stores meets our standards, and often people don’t realize that.”
5. Leftover Food:
Each Whole Foods location donates leftover food to local organizations. How great is that? The specific policy varies slightly by each location, but the end result is the same, all food is donated. All of the whole foods stores have partnerships with local food banks and other local organizations that they can help donate the food to at the end of the day.
You can watch this short video describing the Outstanding Food Donor Award in 2013:
6. Homemade products:
Everything in the hot bar, salad bar, and bakery area is homemade. Get this, Whole foods has a specific team focused on culinary and hospitality factors. They follow the guidelines of Tien Ho, who has worked in the restaurant world for years. Tien is responsible for elevating the quality of the prepared foods. When they say it’s made fresh and by trained chefs it’s 100% accurate.
7. Taste tests:
You can taste anything before you buy it. Say what? Yep, I’m not kidding, seriously anything! Whole Foods has a Try Before You Buy policy. This policy can even be used for packaged foods, like snacks, fresh produce, and cheese. For instance, if there’s a new cheese that comes out, you can ask someone in the produce section to cut you a slice.
8. Butcher Will Prepare Meat:
The butchers can de-bone, season, and/or steam any cut of fish for you. At no extra charge. And it’s not just salt and pepper, there’s also many interesting rubs and spice mixes you can add.
9. Employees Discount.
How could this store get any better at this point? Well, it gets better by a 20% employee discount, and a health-focused incentive that can lead to a higher discount.
And there you have it.
If you weren’t an avid whole foods shopper before, I bet you will be now.
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