Things Whole Foods doesn’t want you to know
There are few supermarket chains that enjoy a better reputation than Whole Foods Market. With nearly 400 locations, about 60,000 employees, and almost $13 billion in revenue for 2013, its dedication to selling natural and organic foods has clearly struck a chord with a population that’s looking to eat healthier, less-processed foods. But like any big company, there are plenty of things going on behind the scenes that they’d probably be happier if you didn’t know about.
Whole Foods has quite an intriguing history. Founders John Mackey and Renee Lawson borrowed $45,000 from friends and family to open a health food store called SaferWay in Austin in 1978, and after being evicted from their apartment for storing food in it, they took up residence in the store itself. Two years later, Mackey partnered with the owners of another natural store and opened the original Whole Foods, which was one of the largest health food stores in the country at the time. The following year, a flood devastated the store, resulting in about $400,000 in damages, but it had become so beloved by that time that the community pitched in to help it recover, and it reopened less than a month later.