Just after Amazon closed on its Whole Foods purchase in August, a Bloomberg headline read, “Amazon cuts Whole Foods prices as much as 43% on first day.”
I saw this headline shared widely among my colleagues, and I felt it was misleading.
It implies huge price cuts across the store (which there weren’t) and across the chain (which weren’t verified). Rotisserie chickens at my local Boston-area Whole Foods are sometimes priced at $4.99, compared to this sale price of $9.99. It also ignores the probability that more pervasive, more realistic price cuts aren’t too far from becoming reality.
When supermarket ownership changes hands, cutting prices on highly visible items in highly visible locations is a common tactic. The Bloomberg article reports on a single store: the Whole Foods in Manhattan’s Columbus Circle, where my brother has seen Larry King shopping. That store is hardly representative of the entire chain or of America as a whole. But the price cuts bolster the idea