WHOLE FOODS COULD OPEN LOWER-PRICED CANADIAN STORES

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Now located in Toronto, Craig is a retail analyst and consultant at the Retail Council of Canada. He's also the Director of Applied Research at the University of Alberta School of Retailing in Edmonton. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for the past 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees. He is also President & CEO of Vancouver-based Retail Insider Media Ltd.

More By Author

Uniqlo Opens Massive Downtown Montreal Flagship as it Enters the Quebec Market [Photos]

The impressive store is the first of several expected for the province as Uniqlo expands further into Canada.

Hudson’s Bay Company Announces Division to Redevelop Real Estate Assets

The real estate arm will transform some stores into mixed-use properties featuring offices, housing, entertainment, and retail space.

Miniso Canada Investors Protest Chinese Parent Company

Local investors claim that the company is acting fraudulently after an alleged settlement with the Canadian division.

Menswear Retailer ‘Ernest’ Unveils New Concept Store in Montreal Following Creditor Protection Filing [Photos]

The retailer's new store concept is a refresh for the retailer which had successfully negotiated store leases following its filing last month.
- Advertisement -

[

Image Source

]

Whole Foods

‘ American parent is testing lower-priced stores in an effort to expand its customer base. If successful, the concept could come to Canada as part of its

intended 40-store Canadian rollout

in the coming years. The new American stores will be located in lower-income neighbourhoods. The first test store opened Wednesday June 5th in Detroit and two more will open this year in New Orleans and on Chicago’s South Side.

The stores will differ from regular Whole Foods stores in the following ways:

  • Lower prices (as is the store’s goal),
  • Fewer employees per store,
  • More frozen and pre-packaged food, and
  • Increased product concentration of its in-house label, ‘365’.

The goal is to bring healthy food to lower-income shoppers who might not otherwise be able to shop in regular Whole Foods stores. Whole Foods has fought a reputation of being ‘too expensive’ and, to its chagrin, some have

nicknamed it ‘Whole Paycheque’

.

The retailer’s American stores earn a gross margin of between 34% and 36%, compared to

Walmart

and

Target

‘s 24%-29%. Lowering prices and quality could still positively affect Whole Foods’ bottom line.

Whole Foods may have to be concerned about their brand perception, however, if it chooses to roll-out its lower-cost stores globally. The store’s current high-quality, higher-priced status could be compromised if the concept isn’t handled properly by company management.

Whole Foods currently has 9 Canadian stores and

expects to open 40 more locations in the coming years

, according to the

Financial Post

. The company intends on eventually having Canadian sales of about $1 billion. It has about 350 American stores with about $12 billion in sales. It has said it wants as many as 1,000 locations eventually, according to its CEO John Mackey.

[

Partial article source

]

[

Whole Foods website

]

SUBSCRIBE to Retail Insider's Daily E-News for Free:

* indicates required
- Advertisement -

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -

Latest articles

Brief: Mendocino Shuts All Stores, Okaïdi Canada Files

Other news: Gap closing most mall stores, co-working space replaces Shinola store, Star Bédard rebrands, Nobis gets charitable.

Grocery Supplier Fees Harm Food Manufacturers and Independent Grocers: Expert

Sylvain Charlebois says that a code of practice is required to save the industry, and if nothing is done the consumer will also suffer.

L.L.Bean Continues Canadian Expansion with 1st Toronto Store [Photos]

The iconic US-based retailer is looking to expand into new Canadian markets coast-to-coast.

How Twin Brothers from Western Canada Founded 2 Rapidly-Growing Direct-to-Consumer Home Furnishings Brands

The entrepreneurs discuss building growth, taking risks, and where retail is going at an unprecedented time.

Cadillac Fairview Innovates with Virtual Food Court Experience Platform

The new CF Eats aims to help food vendors in the landlord’s malls grow revenue at a challenging time.