Whole Foods has been planning a new version of their store called Whole Foods 365, and the first one will be opening up in the Los Angeles area next month. In May the Silverlake area of L.A. will welcome the cheaper priced version of the extremely popular health food store.
The 365 version of the store isn’t expected to be inexpensive when compared to a normal grocery store, however it will continue to sell the organic and healthy versions of food that Whole Foods is known for but at lower costs as its possible.
The company described the 365 concept as “quality meets value,” and they are hoping to reach a target demographic of people between the ages of 18 and 34. This millennial aged grocery shopper is thought to be interested in the healthy living way of life, but also wanting to save money or spend less in general since they usually don’t make as much money as their older counterparts do.
The name of the store comes from Whole Foods’ in house brand that they already sell their own versions of food under, so it will be familiar to the customer to is already familiar with shopping at Whole Foods.
The 365 store will open in Silverlake on May 25. The store will also have its own restaurant inside, which will have food concepts created by the chef of the New York restaurant By Chloe. This move of adding in a vegan eatery is an even stronger attempt to bring in the younger clientele. The store will also have a coffee and tea bar which is also thought to bring people into the store.
According to Jeff Turnas, who is the president of 365 by Whole Foods Market:
“We’re looking to curate an experience that’s totally customizable to that location.”
As for how it will be possible to offer up prices on food that are lower than what they already offer, some of that comes down to store size and the number of employees. The 365 store will have fewer employees overall, which means that there won’t be a deli will people working to cut meats and cheese, for example. Also the store will offer fewer products to fit in the smaller space, which means a cut down on selection.
Whole Foods is quite confident in the concept, and has plans to open three of the stores before the end of 2016, as well as up to ten more before the end of 2017.
It will be interesting to see how the concept plays out. Surely if you asked any Whole Foods shopper if they would prefer to be spending less for the same items their answer would be yes, but if the 365 has a great selection it would be curious why anyone would visit the full priced version of the chain. Perhaps there will be room for both in the average shopper’s cart.