The Government May Not Let Amazon's Big Deal with Whole Foods Happen

sirmonkey1985

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I still shopped at the small places like my favorite bookstore, but everyone else went to Walmart. Then I ended up getting a college job at Walmart and started noticing the pricing of the books and periodicals. They always undercut the local bookstore by a few pennies. People would stand in Walmart and discuss the local news instead of going to the local bookstore. The local bookstore shutdown and Walmart raised all the prices to full retail. People started bitching and complaining. The prices never went down. The local bookstore owner laughed at them when they asked was he going to open again "to fight the scourge".

That was my experience. Same thing happened with the local TV shop that would come to your home and deliver your TV for free. Seen them drive 30+ miles to make a customer's day. Then they would repair your TV sometimes in your home. Satellite dish get offtrack? They would come out on a Saturday to fix it. Walmart killed them off.

We had a animal food store. It's the country so yes, there was a market. They sold everything from dog food to sulfur to get rid of pests. Walmart ran them out of business by undercutting them by a few pennies. Every time they reduced the price, Walmart reduced their price. Same thing as the bookstore; as soon as it shuttered Walmart raised their prices to full retail.

I could go on about the clothing stores and others. You get the picture. I RARELY walk into a Walmart nowadays. Only if they have something so cheap that nobody else can come close. I think I've been 3 times in the past decade. I did get a Samsung 6300 4K TV for $449 this year.

yeah walmarts been trying that for years here, it hasn't worked.. even though this is a big city it's small town mentality so mom and pop stores get priority over the 5 walmarts we have. though with the fiasco that just happened with one of our local grocery store chains that sold out and threw their employee's under the bus walmart's starting to get more business since people are refusing to shop at the local chain now. but all the local electronic stores and corner shops are still going strong. i just wish we had a competent computer store here so i wouldn't have to order basic computer stuff from newegg but that won't happen any time soon since the general population here has no idea how to even turn a computer on let alone know what to buy.

Nah, but costco should step down a little in prices of cheese and meats and other shit. Used to get more ' generic' looking products at Costco they changed a bit too much on that side.

it all depends on who they can get their products from since most of their products are known popular brands just labeled as kirkland so they're stuck paying what ever prices those brands want which in turn effects the customer.
 

IcePickFreak

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Jeff Bezos being an asshole 24/7 to the CEO and cabinet members of the federal government isn't going to help.

And his position on the Richest People In The World list won't help either.
"Cancel the summer recess, we have a fat cow just waiting to be milked boys!"
 

mdburkey

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The point of anti-trust law is to allow competition and to thereby help the consumer. It is not there to protect small mom & pop businesses or to protect business models that are becoming obsolete.

If the merger of Amazon and Whole Foods allows them to better compete with smaller local companies, chains like Walmart, Krogers, etc, and yields better economies of scale that allow them to out compete the competition, then this merger should be allowed to happen. This is not a case of Amazon acquiring a monopoly interest in a given market. This is a case of the biggest fish in the pond entering a new market -- and making all the current denizens (rightfully) terrified.

Retail jobs are going away folks. The business model no longer works in the modern internet connected world. By and large, having 2 and 3 stages of middle men in the supply chain will more and more be a thing of the past.
 

Retronym

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We allow fucking Disney (#1 for theme parks, media, etc..) to own the likes of ESPN (largest and only dedicated sports channel), ABC (1 of 3 main news channels), and swathes of other fields, but we can't allow an online shopping portal to expand to be retail as well? As someone that works in the business world and is very critical of the likes of oligopolies (cable companies, cell-phone providers, etc...) all I can say is go fuck yourselves grocery stores.

Riddle me this - why is this not okay for Amazon but it is for Walmart?

This is just Walmart hitch men paying politicians so that they don't have to deal with grocery delivery to rural areas that they have a monopoly on.

Don't worry about Disney.

Apple will be buying them soon.
 

katanaD

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how is whole foods a threat to national grocery stores? they got some neat stuff, but when i want my gluten free water i go to my tap and turn it on.

but seriously, the people who shop at whole foods and those who shop at their local regular grocery store are, generally with some overlap, 2 very different crowds

also why no outcry over amazon opening brick and mortar book store, a market they very much killed??
 

ccmfreak2

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Doesn't Whole Foods focus more on organic and non-pesticidal foods, as well as other specialty items? Although Kroger might be a strong competitor, it could be argued that Walmart is a "substitute" at best given the lack of direct competition in this sub-market.

It's really hard for me to see Amazon as violating anything anti-trust here as they really don't have a presence in the grocery market. This isn't Amazon buying a competitor as much as it's them truly expanding into new territory. Sure, people are concerned, but specifically why is this negative for the competition? Because things are going to be more convenient for consumers? Because quality products are going to be more competitive, making it easier to buy healthier food in a country where junk food is cheap and healthy foods are expensive?

It's hard for me to view things that appear to be "good" for consumers as negative. It's not that I hate local grocers, but that I desire sellers who are going to serve me the best. Maybe the local grocers can do that. But typically, I find they offer me the same service at a lower speed and/or higher price, or lower quality products at the same prices as the big brands within the larger retailers. Of course, results may vary, but that's my experience. And anything I can find that puts better quality products in the hands of consumers at lower prices, making them easier to obtain for lower-income people - that's a positive in my view.

Will it affect jobs? Of course it will - anytime there are shakeups and restructuring and re-visioning and etc takes place, jobs are affected. But the articles talked about how Whole Foods was struggling under their current leadership anyways. Restructuring was coming at some point regardless. And it might come again after Amazon has them for a while. That's part of business. That doesn't mean it's evil or hateful. Sometimes, after the dust settles, the changes that take place - job changes included - can be positive for most people involved. But if it's good for the consumer, then it's typically good for the economy as well. Walmart and Krogers and Meijer and Aldi's will just have to compete harder.
 

westrock2000

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I keep having to red pill people about this.

The mission statement is right there in the logo. A ------> Z. Alpha & The Omega. Start/Stop.

amazon-com-logo.jpg
 

Iching

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I love Whole Foods and I will support brands available there with my wallet. I'm from Europe and I appreciate local farmers/CSA and Whole Foods products since they're quality. For those hating on Whole Foods. Well, you're the Walmart people.
 

Iching

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T

Whole Foods is the exact opposite, with massively overpriced commodities based primarily on "feels before reals" heavy marketing to convince people to spend 2-5x as much for the same damn thing.

I spend the same whether I shop at ALDI, Trader Joe's or Whole Foods. Not everybody enjoys eating cheap rubbish.
 

nightfly

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I spend the same whether I shop at ALDI, Trader Joe's or Whole Foods. Not everybody enjoys eating cheap rubbish.
And yet, some of us are fine with it most of the time. To many of us, pasta is pasta. Milk is milk. And while we love fresh real italian bread, if we're layering it with garlic and butter, generic loafs are fine, too. Aldi's especially has shown us exactly how much food should really cost, as their home brands are virtually identical to the brand names, for often less than half the price, and they're making money selling them at that price. Even when they sell name brands, it's half the price of the competition. Nathan's hot dogs at Shop Rite or Stop'n'shop, $5.69; at Aldi's? $2.69. Same identical product, down to the label. And you can't tell me Aldi's is using a pack of hot dogs as a loss leader. Amazon simply brings another competitor for the basics. Specialty items such as fresh foods will always be better from the local farmers markets, and that's where we will get them.
 

Ducman69

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I spend the same whether I shop at ALDI, Trader Joe's or Whole Foods. Not everybody enjoys eating cheap rubbish.
How is that possible?

The EXACT SAME food costs way more at Whole Foods in Sugar Land than ALDIs in Rosenberg at least, by a massive margin. The overlap often isn't huge in their selection, but when you see the generic preboxed stuff that you can get at both, and compare the prices, holy shit! The minimum markup I've seen was 30% when comparing shopping lists, and max was around 250%. :eek:

Maybe its because our Whole Foods is in a preppy part of town, and my ALDIS is in the Mexican part, but they aren't even in the ballpark of pricing here. I still go to Whole Foods on occasion for their deli as they have some awesome meats, but for generic poop, ALDIs all the way baby. :)

Whole foods = beautiful store, awesome selection, great service, but really really shitty pricing, even generic stuff like organic vegetables. ALDIS = grab and return your own cart with a quarter, bag your own groceries, mediocre selection, no service, but really great pricing especially on their rotating special buys.
 

Ur_Mom

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When Walmart opened near you did you start to shop there or did you continue to shop at all the smaller places around you?

Depends. I'll shop Winco (treat their employees good, higher wages and benefits, etc.) for the lower prices and better selection. They are another large chain style grocery store. Walmart is closer, so if I have to, I'll shop there for convenience. I won't shop my locally owned store if I can help it (I will for this or that for a single meal, but never for getting 'groceries' that last a while). Prices are twice as much as Winco or Walmart. Produce sits until it's rotten. They can't compete on price. They have to let things sit longer as they don't get as much business and it just goes bad. Can't waste it.

Walmart kills a lot of these smaller places. Not because they are better, but because they are cheaper. When it comes to spending your money, there is rarely any loyalty. If you can support your local store, but pay $4 for a gallon of milk or shop Walmart for $2 a gallon, you'll go to Walmart. Giving your money to a local store owner vs. a large corporation doesn't even come into play. We all have to feed our families, make money to do it, etc..

Walmart sucks as a company, and they do choke out the competition. It's not a surprise, it's not some nefarious plan. It's just how it works.
 

mdburkey

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Simple answer: whatever provides the best quality products at the lowest prices to the consumer is the best solution. Period.
Whether or not the provides jobs or helps support mom & pop shops is immaterial. If they can't compete on a level playing field, they should go out of business.
Most retail jobs and most privately owned stores are going to go away eventually -- get over it, quit fighting it, and quit having local governments try to prop up failed business models and/or prevent entry by major competitors.

If Amazon is able to continue to bring us the quality of food that Whole Foods is known for, but do it at a better price point I'm all for it.

There is a reason why they have often been called "Whole Paycheck".
 

SamuraiInBlack

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As long as Viking Blod is still sold there after the merger, I don't give a damn. It is the only place out by me that sells it at a reasonable price, and even then I have to drive an hour out of my way to get it. That is literally the only reason I have to shop at Whole Foods. Ever.
 

Arcygenical

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I love Whole Foods and I will support brands available there with my wallet. I'm from Europe and I appreciate local farmers/CSA and Whole Foods products since they're quality. For those hating on Whole Foods. Well, you're the Walmart people.

The GF used to be a store buyer and ASM at a local whole-foods. They paid their employees well, had paid time off, sick leave, banked sick days, 2x standard vacation pay and had a health and dental plan... That even covered footwear, unpaid leave (up to 10 additional days) and paid her 1/4th of her salary to quit and sign a non-compete during the last wave of layoffs. Actually, for a grocery store, typing that up... I understand the layoffs.

Honestly, they treat their employees very well - and for that, we still shop there... Well, that and we live in Toronto - so milk is already around 6$ a gallon... and WF uses US pricing for a lot of non-comodity items, just scaled for the exchange rate.

She's also a vegan, and can get tons there she can't find in other places.

Their meat department is a frigging joke though.
 
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Lith1um

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I have strong feeling that the government will eventually let this happen. Jeff Bezos has an interesting relationship with the US government. First he buys the Washington Post for $250 million in cash, then it was discovered that he received a $600 million dollar contract from the CIA.

 

nightfly

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Since so many worry about the survival of mom and pop stores, I suggest a constitutional amendment to legalize marijuana, but limit the income of any merchant who sells it to $100,000 a year to get a license to sell it retail. Oh, that and cigarettes, booze, and soda. Let the poor folks who suffer from the unnecessary costs of those unnecessary products, make a living wage on it, after all, the big corporations bleed us dry on all the really expensive shit. That should keep all those local folks in great business. I might even open up a small shop, myself. No job? Go door to door selling pot, cigarettes, soda and booze; maybe pick up some groceries for your customers, too. We'll have zero unemployment, everyone will be high and happy, and have enough to survive on.
 

Uvaman2

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I am not much of a lover of 'mom and pop' stores.. pay is shit, they fire you for no reason.
'Mom and pop' treated my wife like absolute shit.. at one were things seemed to go decent, they fire her ass so the 'pop' can get a 'friend' in.. the 'mom' was so ashamed she just gave my wife some money.
The other one, just sold the fucking place, not even a mention/warning right after my wife left the second job to dedicate herself more to this business at the offer of better future/ more training / better role with time.
Bullshit, they could all go broke tomorrow for all I care, fuck 'mom and pop' stores, fuck all of you useless greedy fuckers run it yourself and your family or go broke.
 

Xrave

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This is a BS story. The only groups trying to block this merger are the massive grocers (ie: Walmart). Walmart and the larger brands have the most to lose form the merger.

Any small/mom-and-pop grocery owner is already competing with the local WFs. The Whole Foods stores are already in place, so Amazon buying WF won't change that.

Walmart doesn't want this to happen because it gives Amazon 431 brick and mortar distribution centers in the country to allow Amazon to more easily distribute food products that it already distributes today.

upload_2017-6-19_9-36-12.png


WF + Amazon existing business will only be 2.5% market share after the merger.

Besides, if Amazon purchasing WF reduces the logistics cost and my $50 organic, non-GMO, responsibly sourced, unicorn fart, fairy dust sprinkled butter to $49, then it's an overall good thing for consumers.
 

RayderR6

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Sep 14, 2008
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We allow fucking Disney (#1 for theme parks, media, etc..) to own the likes of ESPN (largest and only dedicated sports channel), ABC (1 of 3 main news channels), and swathes of other fields, but we can't allow an online shopping portal to expand to be retail as well? As someone that works in the business world and is very critical of the likes of oligopolies (cable companies, cell-phone providers, etc...) all I can say is go fuck yourselves grocery stores.

Riddle me this - why is this not okay for Amazon but it is for Walmart?

This is just Walmart hitch men paying politicians so that they don't have to deal with grocery delivery to rural areas that they have a monopoly on.

Good lord all you anti establishment ranters...

1) FS1 is another big sports network, CBS has their own as well, ESPN is just the oldest.
2) Grocery stores (or any other business) have set up shop with B&M in your local area, they invested time an money to bring a product to you, this type of "fair business practice" has been going on forever and it is designed to be for your benefit (of course, like all human endeavors, corruption gets involved, but I digress) (e.g. The Publix by my home was able to tell the Walmart they couldn't sell milk because that was the commerce agreement for the area, another was a Walmart couldn't open a super store on Dale Mabry because there was a grocery store in that local area).
3) Careful what you wish for, if Amazon is the only etailer/retailer you want and you continue to pound your chest at every pause that is taken at reviewing the commerce structure, then don't go crying when Amazon is your only choice, you're paying through the nose and complaining about slow delivery, because you asked for it. Then you'll be screaming where is the competition or the government to straighten this out, I laugh every time I see those type of posts, some of them here on [H].

The same people complaining about WM dominance on taking out small businesss, will be the same ones complaining about AMZ, they just won't realize it or understand what keeps happening.

Good luck.
 

thesmokingman

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"U.S. Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) urged the U.S. Department of Justice to conduct a review"

Ugh, figures it'd be Cali. Cali is in a huge mess atm too and to think they have this much time on their hands to worry about Amazon.
 
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