Whole Foods Market® Named to 'World's Most Ethical Companies' List

Mar 16, 2012, 13:00 ET from Whole Foods Market

AUSTIN, Texas, March 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Whole Foods Market, the nation's leading natural and organic supermarket (NASDAQ: WFM), has been recognized on the Ethisphere Institute's 2012 "World's Most Ethical Companies" list. This is the company's fourth time to make the list since 2007, and Whole Foods Market is one of only three U.S. companies named in the "Food Retail" category.

Ethisphere evaluates hundreds of companies, naming only those that surpass their industry peers to the "World's Most Ethical Companies" list. This is the sixth year Ethisphere has published the WME rankings. The 2012 list features companies in more than three dozen industries, including 40 companies headquartered outside the United States. 

"Whole Foods Market is honored to be recognized as a company with a conscience," said John Mackey, co-CEO and co-founder of Whole Foods Market. "Our core values are at the center of the business philosophy that drives Whole Foods Market's unique culture, growth and success. That success comes from making sure all our stakeholders – Team Members, customers, suppliers, shareholders, our communities and the environment– are part of our vision."

The methodology for the WME ranking includes reviewing codes of ethics, litigation and regulatory infraction histories, evaluating the investment in innovation and sustainable business practices, looking at activities designed to improve corporate citizenship, and studying nominations from senior executives, industry peers, suppliers and customers. 

The "World's Most Ethical Companies" list is published in the current issue of the quarterly magazine Ethisphere and is available at http://ethisphere.com/ethisphere-institute-unveils-2012-worlds-most-ethical-companies/

About Whole Foods Market® Founded in 1980 in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market (wholefoodsmarket.com, NASDAQ: WFM), is the leading natural and organic food retailer. As America's first national certified organic grocer, Whole Foods Market was named "America's Healthiest Grocery Store" by Health magazine. The company's motto, "Whole Foods, Whole People, Whole Planet"™ captures its mission to ensure customer satisfaction and health, Team Member excellence and happiness, enhanced shareholder value, community support and environmental improvement. Thanks to the company's more than 65,000 Team Members, Whole Foods Market has been ranked as one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" in America by FORTUNE magazine for 15 consecutive years. In fiscal year 2011, the company had sales of more than $10 billion and currently has 317 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

About Ethisphere Institute: The research-based Ethisphere® Institute is a leading international think-tank dedicated to the creation, advancement and sharing of best practices in business ethics, corporate social responsibility, anti-corruption and sustainability. Ethisphere Magazine, which publishes the globally recognized World's Most Ethical Companies Ranking™, is the quarterly publication of the Institute. Ethisphere provides the only third-party verifications of compliance programs and ethical cultures that include: Ethics Inside® Certification, Compliance Leader Verification™ and Anti-Corruption Program Verification™. The Institute's premier membership group, the Business Ethics Leadership Alliance™, is a business ethics forum that includes more than 100 leading corporations, universities and institutions that collectively leverage their experience, expertise and innovative ways to address emerging compliance challenges. More information on the Ethisphere Institute, including ranking projects and membership, can be found at http://www.ethisphere.com

For more information: Libba Letton libba.letton@wholefoods.com 512-542-3031


SOURCE Whole Foods Market