Even though Whole Foods has always been pricey, I have enjoyed their salad and hot bar, that seemed quite a deal for someone looking for a reasonable, and healthy, alternative to fast food for lunch. Well, recently I decided to treat my daughter to lunch and I took her there. Granted, I haven’t been there in quite a while, as it’s not right down the street from me and this economy has really emptied my pocket book. But, I thought one small splurge for a salad was okay – I was WRONG. And, I’m betting there are more people like me who are making the last trip to Whole Foods as this economy begins to compact our spending, and we start evaluating the value we are getting for our money spent.
Thirty Dollars For Two Salads And A Shared Drink
Okay, I think it’s a little strange that two salads and a shared drink should cost this much, and that’s because they upped their prices from $5.99/lb to $7.99/lb. While everyone else in this recession is dropping their prices, Whole Foods got the bright idea to raise theirs! Way to go! Very sustainable – NOT! Is the quality worth it though? In comparison to what? McDonalds? How about a local eatery like Aladdin’s down the street from me that sells the same fare, Meditteranean cuisine basically, and you get to eat it on real china and with metal forks and spoons. And, you aren’t lined up like cattle getting to the register, ala cafeteria style, and hoping you get a seat. Nope, they meet you at the front at Aladdin’s, seat you in a quiet atmosphere, and treat the customer like gold. Ah, and if you order there you get more than one drink and no one hassles you about putting away your own dishes.
That Was The Kicker
Yes, on my way out I got hassled about what receptacle was the “proper” place to put my fork, my napkin, and my plate by an overzealous recycling employee. Honestly, I’m all for recycling, but I just spent $30 to be herded like a cow, chewing on a small wad of greens, and then chastised for not putting away my own dishes. Worth $30? Certainly not to me anymore. I’d rather go to a nice restaurant, if I’m going to be forced to pay the same amount I’d pay for a great sit-in dinner. Then, if they want to recycle there, by all means do it on your own dollar.
The Outlook For Whole Foods? Not Good.
So, I checked online to see what exactly is happening to Whole Foods in this economy, and this quote seemed to capture the problem precisely:
One of Whole Foods’ strengths was that it offered grocery shoppers a luxurious and distinctive shopping experience. However, it appears that many consumers consider shopping at Whole Foods an extravagance during rockier economic times. The company deliberately branded itself as a purveyor of premium quality groceries and this has recently become more of a stigma than a benefit in the eyes of value-seeking shoppers.
Yep, bye, bye, Whole Foods, with Harris Teeter selling salad bar fixings that can rival anything Whole Foods has at a price of $5.99/lb, I think Whole Paycheck has definitely taken their hubris at being “natural and green” to unsustainable levels in this economy.