Amazon Slashes Prices at Whole Foods

Amazon Slashes Prices at Whole Foods

Morningstar retail analyst RJ Hottovy said he expects Whole Foods won't aim to match other grocers' prices across the board, but will roll back prices on enough products to bring in more shoppers.

True to its word, Amazon stormed its new Whole Foods stores Monday and slashed prices on several popular grocery items.

Bloomberg recently visited a store in Manhattan and found discounts of as much as 43 percent.

Whole Foods headquarters will continue to be located in Austin, Texas but is stated to have access to Amazon's data and innovative processes that will eventually be rolled out such as the use of Amazon lockers in some Whole Foods locations. Apples were also cheaper, with Gala now being sold for $1.99 (reduced from $2.99) and Fuji apples also being reduced to $1.99 a pound, down from $3.49.

Amazon said those changes were just the beginning, but didn't give details on what more is coming. "If they can slash their prices, that's great".

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Walmart, the largest retailer in the world, has invested billions in lowering its prices of all its products over the previous year or more, and revamped its produce sections at US locations, improving the sight lines, adding additional fresh fruits and creating its own sweeter cantaloupe. The groceries that cost $97.76 on Friday cost $75.85 today, a difference of 23%. For example, the price of a jar of creamy almond butter dropped 13% to $6.99 on Monday from $7.99 on Sunday.

"The two companies will together pursue the vision of making Whole Foods Market's high-quality, natural and organic food affordable for everyone", they announced in a joint statement. Amazon has demonstrated that it is willing to invest to dominate the categories that it decides to compete in.

Amazon's website also reflects the discounts on the devices, along with a discount for the Amazon Tap.

Walmart, which has been ramping up its online operation, has added more fresh-cut fruit and is rolling out curbside pickup.

Whole Foods, meanwhile, gets to exhale. The voice-activated Echo ("Alexa, where is the nearest Whole Foods") was on sale for $99.99.