LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif. (April 19, 2012) – Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods supermarket, is bringing a new style of grocery shopping to the Orange County scene with the opening of its new Laguna Niguel store that includes a number of exclusive features such as an in-store demo kitchen complete with an executive chef.

 “As a longtime resident of the Laguna Niguel community, I’m pleased to be able to bring the unique Whole Foods Market shopping experience to my friends and neighbors,” said Patrick Bradley, regional president for Whole Foods Market Southern Pacific Region. “In addition to providing the wide selection of delicious, natural and organic foods that are the hallmark of Whole Foods Market, we’d like this store to become a dining destination for the community where they can come to relax, enjoy a drink, listen to music and grab a bite to eat.”

 When the store opens on Wed., May 16 at 9:00 a.m., guests will be greeted by a store full of favorite features like prepared salads and hot food bars brimming with options. They will also be able to take advantage of new features like an outdoor fire pit and in-store wine and beer bar that will offer 12 local beers on tap and an assortment of wines available by the glass. The Laguna Niguel location is also the first Whole Foods Market in Southern California to offer visitors the ability to sample a unique selection of artisan alcohol and spirits sold in the store. Guests can enjoy dining on prepared foods and/or beverages in the 150-seat indoor-outdoor café.

 “We’re proud to introduce our new store to the Laguna Niguel community and we’ve worked hard to bring interesting features and products tailored especially for them,” said Norm Shaughnessy, Whole Foods Market Laguna Niguel Store Team Leader.  “We look forward to becoming a trusted community resource where residents can learn about the benefits of organic products, healthy eating, feeding their families economically and find products to suit special dietary needs,” added Shaughnessy.

 The much-anticipated store, located at 23932 Aliso Creek Road, is the fourth Whole Foods Market located in Orange County. The nearly 36,000 square-foot store will showcase a variety of venues and products consistent with the Whole Foods Market promise of offering the highest-quality natural and organic products while addressing the needs of the Laguna Niguel and surrounding communities.  

The store’s commitment to locally sourced products is evident by its offerings from over 100 local vendors and farmers from nearby San Diego, Orange and Los Angeles counties including: Homegrown Meats, Backyard Bees (with products in both grocery and whole body), Archi's Acres, Stehly, Suzies, Go Green, Carlsbad Aquafarm and Golden Road Brewing.

 Among the many departments throughout the store, the new space will feature an extensive produce section with seasonal varieties, including locally grown fruits and vegetables.  In line with Whole Foods Market’s strict quality standards, the meat department will provide shoppers the highest quality meat free of antibiotics and added hormones.* The 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating™ program also tells shoppers just how the animals were raised for the meat they’re buying.

The seafood department will offer fresh wild-caught seafood that is certified by Marine Stewardship Council or green or yellow rated by Blue Ocean Institute. Responsibly Farmed™ seafood rounds out the fresh case – and customers can rest assured their farmed seafood is not raised with animal byproducts or antibiotics. There will be an extensive selection of prepared foods created by Whole Foods Market’s Executive Chef that can be enjoyed in the indoor/outdoor dining area or at home.

Designed and built with the environment in mind, the brightly colored store will feature everything from decorative displays made with reclaimed carpet fibers and check stand lights that are made of corrugated cardboard to wall decór made with salvaged hard wood from a mill in Northern California.

 Highlights that Whole Foods Market Laguna Niguel shoppers can look forward to enjoying include:

  • In-store demo kitchen will offer a series of different cooking classes taught by our executive chef and well-known local chefs. There will also be regular wine and beer tasting events held to highlight different selections that can be found in the store.
  • Seasonal and locally sourced conventional and organic produce, Whole TradeTM Guarantee Bananas and Pineapple, and organic fruits and veggies cut fresh daily in store.
  • Meat department with a full line of locally sourced beef and chicken, a variety of selections ready to take home and cook, and in-house smoked meats.
  • Seafood department featuring sustainably sourced fresh salmon, filets, steaks, local and seasonal seafood, whole fish and oven-ready selections. Fresh seafood is delivered up to six days a week.
  • Full in-store bakery with a team of dedicated bakers creating freshly made breads from scratch, muffins, scones, cakes, pies, tarts, cookies, and special diet selections like vegan and gluten-free treats.
  • A host of value-conscious grocery items line the shelves such as our 365 Everyday Value brand pantry staples, featuring thousands of products priced at the same low prices, everyday.
  • A large bulk and raw foods section featuring heirloom beans, sprouted nuts/grains/flours with a focus on unique ingredients for cooking nutritious meals from scratch.
  • In-store kitchen that features handcrafted pizza, in-house chips and dips, custom-made sandwiches, rolled-to-order sushi, organic salad bar, hot soups, meals-on-the-go and Weekday Deals.
  • Whole Body section with a focus on sports nutrition as well as personal-care items to care for the whole body along with nutritional supplements and vitamins. There will also be six local vendors with baby related products featured in the department.
  • Café seating for 150 with free Wi-Fi, 12 checkouts and plenty of parking.

 

For additional information on Whole Foods Market’s Laguna Niguel store, please visit www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/lagunaniguel or to stay updated on grand opening events and activities, follow Whole Foods Market Laguna Niguel on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/WholeFoodsMarketLagunaNiguel and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/WholeFoodsLGN

*Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in raising pork, poultry, goat, veal and bison.

 Contact: Shari Gold, GOLD PR for Whole Foods Market (714) 251-0375 | sgold@goldpr.com