Whole Foods Plans Small-Format Stores

The first location for the urban-oriented concept will open in New York City later this year.
Whole Foods Albuquerque location exterior

AUSTIN, Texas — Whole Foods Market plans to open a small-format store in New York later this year.

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Called Whole Foods Market Daily Shop, the store concept will have locations ranging in size from 7,000 square feet to 14,000 square feet, which will make them roughly a quarter to half the size of the average Whole Foods Market store, according to Retail Info Systems (RIS), a sister publication to Convenience Store News.

The first store will open in Manhattan at 1175 Third Ave., with additional locations in the area to follow. Following the New York City-based launch, the company plans to bring the format to other cities across the country.

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"At our new store formats, we're tailoring every square foot to the unique, fast-paced needs of urban lifestyles," said Christina Minardi, executive vice president of growth and development at Whole Foods Market and Amazon. "Expanding our footprint with Whole Foods Market Daily Shop is key to our growth, fostering deeper customer connections, and advancing our purpose to nourish people and the planet."

The stores have been designed to provide shoppers in urban neighborhoods a quick, convenient shopping experience, RIS reported. Customers at these stores will be able to use self-checkout or a manned register, with both offering Amazon One, a palm-based identity service for payment, as a payment option.

In addition to the usual selection of grab-and-go meals, snacks and prepared meals, the sites will sell a range of seasonal produce, breads, alcohol and a handpicked range of local specialties. According to the report, the first New York location will also include a Juice & Java venue offering coffee, tea, fresh pressed juices, smoothies, sandwiches, soups and various desserts.

Whole Foods has previous experience in experimenting with different formats and sizing, such as the launch of its 365 by Whole Foods Market store concept in California in 2016. Larger than its current small-format proposal at 28,000 square feet, the 365 by Whole Foods Market stores offered a selection of grocery items, meat, produce, dairy, alcohol, body care products and prepared foods, along with unique venues and retail innovations. The concept also came integrated with a loyalty program at launch.

Though the concept eventually expanded out to 12 locations, Whole Foods dropped the 365 branding in 2019 and reintegrated all of the existing stores back under its primary banner.

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Founded in 1980, Austin-based Whole Foods Market operates more than 500 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. It is wholly owned by Amazon.com Inc.

RIS and CSNews are properties of EnsembleIQ.

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