Wholefoods Market were initially one of the leading organic retailers in the UK. They still are, but now have a much broader range of products including organic, gluten-free, vegan and free-from foods as well as an extensive range of speciality food products. The range of products consumers are demanding has increased significantly over the past 10-15 years and Wholefoods have kept up with these demands, whilst never compromising on the products they stock.
Whilst Wholefoods still buy a large part of their range from purely organic food wholesalers, the breadth of their offering now means that they use speciality food wholesalers, such as Cotswold Fayre too. After a few fallow years organic food has been experiencing significant growth again since 2015, and with the tremendous increase in free-from, gluten-free and vegan products, the offering at Wholefoods Market is appealing to a large sector of the more affluent London consumers.
For a large store like Wholefoods, consolidation of supply is absolutely key. Many of the stores simply do not have any more delivery slots available, so any new products must come in with one of their existing supply routes i.e. organic food supplier, gluten free wholesale, vegan food distributor, free from foods wholesaler.
This mix of speciality food, organic food and diet-related food within one store, we believe, is the way forward. The lines between the health food shops and speciality food shops (delicatessens, farm shops, food halls) is much more blurred than it used to be and far more organic food, gluten-free food and free-from food appears in speciality food outlets now than it did ten years ago. To a more limited degree the opposite is also true that health food stores also stock speciality products now too, as long as they are good for you too. There is also no doubt that Wholefoods has been the pioneer in driving these food trends across the UK.