Amazon Acquires Whole Foods Market

Amazon recently announced its intention to acquire Whole Foods Market, a $13.7 billion deal that has food manufacturers quaking in their boots. As noted by Fortune “grocery stocks took a nosedive” following the announcement.
The allure of instant gratification and convenience is ever present in today’s world. Unfortunately, when it comes to food, speed and convenience is an abomination to quality and sustainability. Sure, many will probably greet the news of Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods as a good thing. Now you can order organic foods with a single click and have it delivered right to your doorstep. In reality, however, this mentality presents a number of problems.

Just as Amazon changed the book industry by forcing the entire supply chain to cut costs, the organic food industry may now face the same challenges, thereby ensuring the deterioration of organic food quality. As reported by
The Washington Post millions of pounds of soybeans and corn imported from Turkey, bearing the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “USDA Organic” seal, were recently found to be non-organic.
The convenience of online shopping has led to a major cardboard and packing waste problem. The main recycling plant in San Francisco alone collects 100 tons of cardboard per day.

Online shopping for organic foods also creates an enormous barrier between consumers and farmers. One of the best ways to ensure you’re getting high-quality food is to get to know the grower. Establishing and nurturing such relationships, and really getting to understand where your food comes from and how it’s grown, puts “soul” back into the food, nourishes the spirit and strengthens community bonds.

Many organic enthusiasts believe Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods is an overall bad idea – not for Amazon, clearly, but for Americans in general, our environment and our food system. We’ve fought long and hard to change the status quo, and Americans have awoken to the fact that health and food are inseparable. You cannot eat junk and expect to be well.

By turning Whole Foods into an Amazon entity, we stand to lose quite a bit of ground. We don’t need more organic processed foods, which is what will work best in Amazon’s business model. We need farmers to grow more fresh foods. We also need to get closer to the source of our food, not further away from it, which is exactly what online shopping will accomplish. Lastly, we need to go beyond organic certification, as USDA certification is becoming increasingly watered down by industrial interests.

Article adapted from Mercola.com.

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