Whole Foods Finally Spills the Details of Its Affordable New Chain
Way back in May, we reported that Whole Foods was gearing up to expand its business model to include a lower-priced offshoot chain meant to rival the accessibility and appeal of Trader Joe’s. After plenty of waiting, more details regarding the nature of the 365 markets, as they will be called, have finally emerged.
As was first teased, the affordable health food destinations are aimed at millennial shoppers with 365’s first location set to open in the supremely hip Los Angeles neighborhood of Silver Lake this May. As many as 10 subsequent locations are slated to open next year.
“There’s a piece of the business we’re not getting,” 365 president Jeff Turnas told Fortune. The new stores are intended to scoop up customers who might scoff at Whole Foods prices and prefer to pick up farmers’ market produce and pantry staples at a Trader Joe's instead.
According to Fortune,“Stores within the 365 chain will keep the prices of products down through a simpler, more consistent design that requires less labor in the store.” The size will also be significantly less sprawling than your average Whole Foods store. The Silver Lake location is 28,000 square feet, as opposed to an average of 45,000 square feet.
As for the all-knowing cheesemongers and butchers? Fortune reports that 365 won’t have those Whole Foods mainstays either, and the focus will generally shift toward packaged and prepared items, with the store’s namesake brand anchoring the merchandise. The biggest overlap between Whole Foods and the new 365 markets will be in the pantry sections. And good news for the on-the-go lunch crowd: get ready for four, yes four, food bars.
Turnas revealed that in gathering inspiration for the transition from high-end to more accessible, they looked to luxury restaurants that have spawned successful casual spinoffs (Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group's move from Gramercy Tavern and the Modern to Shake Shack, for example). He remarked that the move to a simpler, more streamlined experience should still deliver the expected degree of top-notch quality—365 #goals, we’re sure.
Are you hoping one lands in your city?