What could Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods mean for Australia?

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 19th June 2017

Over the weekend, Amazon acquired Whole Foods, a premium American supermarket chain which only sells foods without artificial preservatives, colours, flavours, sweeteners and hydrogenated fats.

For years now, there has been plenty of speculation that Amazon will be launching its ‘AmazonFresh’ online grocery delivery service in Australia.

Although a AmazonFresh arrival has not been confirmed yet, speculation that Amazon will at least be establishing some type of grocery presence in Australia has been ramping up over the past several months.

In May 2017 for example, UBS said Amazon was speaking to Australian suppliers of non-perishable goods.

In November 2016, Woolworths confirmed it had established a new business department solely dedicated to preparing itself for an Amazon invasion.

If speculation is correct, Amazon could now have the chance to not only establish itself as a grocery provider in Australia under Amazon branding, but also introduce Australians to Whole Foods.

Whole Foods answers a niche demand for a solely health focused supermarket that today in Australia is really only catered for by a handful of independent stores. Products in these stores are also usually priced highly.

Even though a small selection of health foods are available at Australia’s larger supermarkets, Whole Foods could be the first large scale, health focused supermarket in Australia.

Traditionally however, premium and high-priced supermarkets have not done so well in Australia, so Amazon may have to ensure it perfects Whole Foods pricing prior to any Australian launch.

Although, times may be changing with new data just released from Nielsen today, showing Australians are willing to pay more for organic and “premium” groceries.


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