AUSTIN, Texas (October 23, 2007) Whole Foods Market (Nasdaq: WFMI), the world's leading natural and organic grocer, has been awarded the Green Power Partner of the Year award by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for a second consecutive year. The award recognizes Whole Foods Market's leadership in accelerating the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide.
This is the fourth consecutive year Whole Foods Market has been recognized with a Green Power Leadership Award by EPA, after being recognized initially in 2004 for the company's growing commitment to green power purchasing.
In 2007, Whole Foods Market is being recognized for increasing its green power purchasing to include more than 509 million kilowatt-hours of wind-based renewable energy credits. This is enough renewable energy to offset 100 percent of the electricity used in all of its stores, facilities, bake houses, distribution centers, regional offices and global headquarters in the U.S. and Canada. Whole Foods Market is the only FORTUNE 500 Company to offset 100 percent of its electricity use with renewable energy credits.
Whole Foods Market's commitment to purchases of renewable energy is part of a portfolio approach to reducing the company's carbon footprint, which also includes:
- Fueling trucks with biodiesel at four of the Company's nine distribution centers
- Composting of food waste at stores and facilities
- Developing green construction methods, building some stores to LEED certification standards, and selecting green building materials
- Recycling plastics, glass and aluminum at stores
- Selling canvas and reusable shopping bags
- Offering a bag refund to encourage shoppers to reuse bags
- Offering compostable food packaging for prepared foods
The planned growth of Whole Foods Market in 2008, including the opening of new stores and the addition of nearly 70 stores acquired through a 2007 merger with Wild Oats Markets, will add substantially to the company's ability to stimulate demand for renewable power generation throughout the United States and Canada.
“Our commitment to the development of the green power market is just one part of our broader environmental stewardship approach, which we call our Green Mission,” said Michael Besancon, regional president and green mission task force leader for Whole Foods Market. “We're proud to be recognized once again by EPA for our efforts to be part of the solution.”
The EPA Green Power Partner of the Year award is a competitive award that recognizes outstanding commitments and achievements in the green power marketplace by individuals and organizations that are significantly advancing the development of renewable electricity by voluntarily purchasing green power or creating innovative supply options for consumers.
“America is shifting to a 'green culture', with more and more businesses understanding that environmental responsibility is everyone's responsibility,” said Marcus Peacock, EPA's Deputy Administrator. “EPA commends the Green Power Leadership Award winners for making a long-term commitment to protecting the environment by purchasing green power.”
Whole Foods Market received the EPA's highest honor for its green power purchases at an October 22nd awards event in Philadelphia on the first night of the National Renewable Energy Marketing Conference. Kathy Loftus, Whole Foods Market's national energy manager, accepted the award for Whole Foods Market this year, on behalf of the Company's's more than 270 U.S. stores and 50,000 Team Members.
About the U.S. EPA's Green Power Partnership EPA's Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations to purchase green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with conventional electricity use. The Partnership currently has hundreds of Partners voluntarily purchasing billions of kilowatt hours of green power annually. Partners include a wide variety of leading organizations such as FORTUNE 500 companies, small and medium sized businesses, local, state, and federal governments, trade associations, as well as colleges and universities. Additional information about the Green Power Partnership and the Green Power Leadership Awards is available at https://www.epa.gov/greenpower/awards/winners.htm.