Bloomberg reports that Whole Foods is rolling out “a new range of healthier prepared foods, nutritional scorecards and other changes as part of its resolution to lure shoppers who want to get healthy.” Among the innovations being introduced by the retailer are “adding healthier prepared foods and baked goods in stores nationwide that meet new criteria such as sprouted grain bread with no refined flour, added oil, refined sugar or processed ingredients”; “posting nutritional scorecards around markets to help shoppers choose foods with the most nutrients per calorie”; “employing a specialist in healthy eating at each store to provide tips, tours and demonstrations for customers”; and “increasing services such as wellness clubs and nutrition education.”
- KC's View:
There’s that word “services” again. (See our “Eye-Opener,” above, which addresses this same issue in a broader context.)
The Bloomberg story notes that Whole Foods “has struggled with a dual identity for years, beginning as a health food grocer then becoming more of a purveyor of indulgences like gourmet cheese and chocolate. The changes, part of a program the company calls ‘Health Starts Here,’ are intended to bring the healthy part of the company's heritage to the forefront of shoppers' minds.”
Seems to me that the biggest challenge to Whole Foods is making sure that the new foods meet a certain taste profile ... which is the clinical way of saying that they’d better be yummy. Healthy foods are of absolutely no use, IMHO, if they taste like cardboard.