Whole Foods Greenwashing

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Heather Watry
2/19/13
ENGL 1120
Spring 2013
Whole Foods

“Going Green” is something that is becoming increasingly popular among large companies worldwide. Whole Foods Market has always been an organic grocery store, and one would think that they are one of the most sustainable out there. Greenwashing has been defined by Wikipedia as, "…the act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service." When I researched the controversial topic of whether or not Whole Foods is greenwashing, I found multiple different opinions. The company has been described as both the biggest greenwasher out there and also an honest organic company. Whole Foods Market claims that their mantra is to reach beyond food reality; to support the health, well being, and happiness of both the people and planet Earth. They offer a “nickel per bag” program in hopes to encourage reduced and reusable packaging methods. They use “less toxic cleaning products” and they encourage the use of these to their customers, as well. Whole Foods financially supports multiple environmental organizations, and stands by their sides in their fight for a more sustainable Earth. All of these truths are real according to Whole Food’s actual website; however, there are still people who believe that they are being dishonest. The CEO of Whole Foods, John Mackey, has been quoted saying “We sell a bunch of junk.” This evidence is used when Whole Foods is named one of the “5 foods to never eat” on deliciousobsessions.com. Multiple employees were asked if Whole Foods carried genetically modified organisms (GMO). The mixed responses were further proof that Whole Foods is not being completely truthful. While some employees insisted that GMO were against everything that they stood for, others said that the company would not be able to last without the sales of GMO. Proposition 37 requires the labeling of genetically modified organisms, and...
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