Whole Foods Market® to Celebrate 30 Years of Organic Agriculture, Environmental Stewardship, Local Communities and Making Grocery Shopping Fun

Headquarters in Austin to Host Birthday Bash Weekend for 30 Contest Winners; Shoppers & Communities Invited to In-Store Celebrations at Local Stores

Aug 13, 2010, 17:08 ET from Whole Foods Market

AUSTIN, Texas, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Whole Foods Market (Nasdaq: WFMI) turns 30 this September, celebrating three decades of offering the highest quality natural and organic foods and supporting organic agriculture, environmental stewardship and local producers.  With a birthday bash at its world headquarters and festivities at all of its stores, Whole Foods Market will acknowledge not only its past accomplishments, but also future food, farming and environmental initiatives for healthier communities and planet.

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Nineteen Team Members helped open Whole Foods Market in Austin on September 20, 1980, with a simple goal of providing a more natural alternative to conventional grocery offerings. At the same time, the organization that became the Organic Trade Association was established, giving the organic movement new momentum.  After Whole Foods Market was in business for a decade, U.S. organic retail sales reached $1 billion in 1990; today these sales represent a $24 billion industry.  America's first National Certified Organic Grocer, Whole Foods Market today employs more than 55,000 Team Members in its 298 stores in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom and reached sales of $8 billion in 2009.

"Whole Foods Market was started to offer people healthy, high quality food in its purest state, and we're still committed to that mission 30 years later," said co-founder and co-CEO John Mackey.  "It has been extremely rewarding to see that Whole Foods Market is much more than a grocery store to our shoppers and our Team Members.  It is a catalyst for helping make our world a better place to live. We now have the scale, visibility and opportunity to have a larger influence than ever before."  

In a recent online survey conducted in June by Harris Interactive® for Whole Foods Market, more than four-fifths of Baby Boomers say they are now more concerned with the foods they eat (84 percent), read nutrition labels more closely today (84%) and have a better understanding of how their food is produced (83 percent) than they did three decades ago.  

World Headquarters Birthday Bash & Store Celebrations

To commemorate its 30th birthday, 30 shoppers (and their guests) were selected from more than 5,600 entries from the Company's "A Heart as Big as Texas" short essay contest to win a trip to Whole Foods Market's world headquarters in Austin for an expense-paid VIP culinary weekend, September 17-19, presented by Texas Tourism, JetBlue Airways and Radisson Austin.  The winners, who will enjoy a weekend of parties, events and culinary delights, include:

ARIZONA

NEW YORK

Marianne Thomas, Scottsdale

Justin Soffer, New York

CALIFORNIA

OKLAHOMA

Kristin Kozlowski, Los Angeles

Karee Pyeatt, Oklahoma City

Amy Neussl, Healdsburg

Mary Jo Ridgway, Clovis

OREGON

Shawna Allen, Hillsboro

COLORADO

Merit Webster, Portland

David Westman, Denver

PENNSYLVANIA

FLORIDA

Beth Moulton, Audubon

Anjanette Cason, Orlando

Donna Gephart, Jupiter

SOUTH CAROLINA

Jan Williams, Jacksonville

Donna Roberts, Murrells Inlet

GEORGIA

UTAH

Michael  Love, Atlanta

Karen Abbott, Salt Lake City

HAWAII

TEXAS

Angela Ericksen, Maui

Clare Frey, Dallas

Sadie Jones, Austin

MASSACHUSETTS

Gayle Gordon, Sharon

VIRGINIA

Sarah Hine, Brighton

Kathleen Feeney, Richmond

Gian Scozzaro, Belmont

Anthony Mace, Fairfax

MICHIGAN

WASHINGTON

Claudia Hershman, Huntington Woods

Charles Berghoffer III, Redmond

Annmarie Skazinski, Grand Haven

Melissa Cisneroz, Seattle

NEW MEXICO

CANADA-ONTARIO

Mindy Caplan, Albuquerque

Dustin Brown, Toronto

All 298 stores companywide will also celebrate this milestone with parties and events from September 17-20.  Visit local store web pages to learn about their 30th birthday festivities at wholefoodsmarket.com/stores and visit the Whole Foods Market 30th birthday press room page at: http://bit.ly/c2zcDI.

Contact: Robin Rehfield

Robin.Rehfield@wholefoods.com

617.492.5500 x3139

SOURCE Whole Foods Market