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Amazon’s official takeover of Whole Foods Market started with a bid to rehabilitate the grocery chain’s “whole paycheck” reputation, with lower prices on a variety of both fresh foods and dry goods evident on store shelves Monday.
“What we know about Amazon is that they lower prices on everything. This is day one and this is actually coming a lot sooner than anybody expected them to lower prices,” said Phil Lempert, founder and editor of SupermarketGuru.com.
A Whole Foods spokeswoman referred NBC News to shelf photos that showed markdowns on 365 Everyday Value — Whole Foods’ house brand — organic butter and GMO-free almond butter.
In a press release Thursday, Amazon said 365 Everyday Value as well as Whole Foods’ other private-label brands will be available to shoppers using Amazon’s site, AmazonFresh, Prime Pantry and Prime Now.
Lempert said a focus on lowering prices for 365 products would be strategically smart for Amazon to pursue. “365 is a high-quality brand, and it’s something people can’t get elsewhere,” he said, pointing out that the growth of discount grocery chains like Lidl and Aldi reflect a demographic shift in how Americans relate to grocery brands. “Millennials and Gen Z see no difference between a name brand and a house brand,” he said.
According to various reports, the following is a partial list of prices Amazon has lowered in Whole Foods stores.
Organic bananas (per pound): $0.99/$0.69
Organic Fuji apples (per pound): $3.49/$1.99
Organic avocados (each): $2.79/$1.99
Organic baby kale (per container): $3.99/$3.49
365 organic unsalted butter: $5.29/$4.49
365 almond butter: $7.99/$6.99
85% lean ground beef (local, grass-fed, per pound): $10.99/$6.99
Atlantic salmon filet (per pound): $14.99/$9.99
Organic large brown eggs (dozen): $4.29/$3.99
But it's not just Whole Foods that is seeing impact from the new family relationship. A review of Amazon's Fresh service for grocery delivery found there are now over 860 results for Whole Foods private label products available for Amazon customers to order.