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Amazon slashes Whole Foods prices by up to 43 percent on first day

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Lee Adams carefully checked his receipt after shopping at an entire food market in Venice on Monday and was a bit disappointed to find that prices were unchanged for his list of vegan groceries.

“Prices are the same so far for the things I buy,” Adams said.

But that will probably change – and soon.

Amazon.com Inc. immediately broke prices by up to 43% for some of Whole Foods’ best-selling products on Monday, the day that its $ 13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods Market Inc. was completed.

Prices were reduced for whole bananas, large brown eggs, salmon, avocados, baby cabbage and almond butter, among other foods.

Amazon had said last week that it would cut prices if the deal was closed so that Whole Foods – whose products often targeted premium rates that carried the exclusive chain mockingly as “Whole Natural and Green Paycheck”. Instead, “affordable” Converted all over the world. “

“It’s impressive that they would execute the pricing strategy so quickly,” said Mark Hamrick, senior economics analyst at Bankrate.com.

More prizes are expected for more items at the 470 full-service food stores in the United States, Canada and the UK, and whole foods said that price reductions were not temporary.

It’s this aggressive pricing approach, an Amazon brand that hit $ 611 billion. Industry of the food industry.

Competing supermarket chains that operate with slim profit margins are likely to face additional pressures to lower prices and strengthen their loyalty programs, or they will lose the risk of losing buyers to whole foods.

Shares of rival food merchants fell again on Monday in response to Amazon’s decision.

Shares of Kroger Co., which owns the Ralphs chain in southern California, hit two cents at $ 21.72 and are down 37 percent this year. Sprouts Farmers Markets Inc. fell 9.7% to $ 19.72. Supervalu Inc. fell 2.2% to $ 19.76. Meanwhile, Amazon rose 76 cents to $ 946.02.

Amazon, the e-commerce giant, is also planning to give Amazon Prime members more prices and other benefits on-site at Whole Foods. Amazon is already selling its Echo and Echo Dot devices with voice support at Whole Foods stores as part of its plan to integrate the two companies.

Prices of organic bananas were reduced from 30 percent to 69 cents a pound of 99 cents; Organic avocados fell 29% to $ 1.99 from $ 2.79, and organic roast chicken fell 29% to $ 9.99 from $ 13.99.

Store displays showed the “new lowest price” on items along with the previous price, along with samples that said “We Grow Something Good – Whole Foods + Amazon”.

“If it’s not a gimmick and [prices] go down and it’s still low, that would be incredible,” Adams said. “Whole foods are so expensive.”

Danny Hillel, another buyer at the Whole Foods Store in Venice, said he realized that the prices of sandwiches and pizza had not changed. But he welcomed the downward trend in prices.

“If prices go down, I would still buy here,” Hillel said. “It’s a great thing, as long as the quality remains the same.”

Whole foods struggled before Amazon announced a purchase plan in mid-June. A combination of the high prices of Whily Foods and the thefts of rival supermarkets that sell their own organic and natural foods has slowed the growth of Whole Foods.

“A great brand was on the verge of irrelevance (or at least marginalization)” before Amazon pounced, analyst Karen Short of Barclays Bank said in a note to customers Friday.

Now “price cuts are likely wide” at Whole Foods, and that means “Farewell whole foods, as we know it,” wrote short.

When asked about comments from Amazon and Whole Foods Kroger spokeswoman Kristal Howard said that her own company “is very proud of the role we have made more affordable and accessible to all customers in the production of natural and organic products, Especially For buyers of a budget “and that Kroger has an” unrestricted obligation of lower prices also for conventional products. “

Albertson’s Cos., A privately-owned Albertsons-owned company, Vons and the Pavilion’s food chains, declined to comment.

In addition to reducing prices for all Whole Foods buyers, Amazon could launch whole food growth by linking the food chain to its Prime members, which each year costs $ 99 and includes Amazon Free Shipping products

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