CHICAGO, IL (July 24, 2007) —Whole Foods Market® (Nasdaq: WFMI), the world’s leading natural and organic foods supermarket and the nation’s first certified organic grocer, opens its new 40,000-square-foot Northalsted store on Wednesday, July 25. The much-anticipated store is located at Halsted and Waveland Aves., as the anchor to the Center on Halsted, the most comprehensive Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender (GLBT) Community Center in the Midwest. It is the first Whole Foods Market to have a presence in such an esteemed Center in the nation. This store provides Northalsted and surrounding-area residents with great-tasting, high-quality foods in a convenient and contemporary setting.

The store is one of four stores opening in the Chicago area in 2007. Other new stores include the recently opened Cicero and Peterson (Sauganash) and the Roosevelt and Canal (South Loop) location opening on August 8. The Northbrook store at Waukegan and Willow Roads is scheduled to open August 29.

“At Whole Foods Market, it is our goal to share our enthusiasm for the freshest, most flavorful natural and organic foods, and we are thrilled to open a store for the Northalsted community. Whether you’re seeking a wide variety of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables, specialty gourmet items, high-quality meats and poultry, or everyday pantry staples at great prices, you can find what you’re looking for here,” comments Tom Marciniak, store team leader. “We believe that food in its purest state – free of artificial flavors, sweeteners, preservatives, colorings and trans fats – is the best tasting and most nutritious food available.”

The store celebrates its grand opening through the weekend with food samplings, giveaways, music and much more. The opening ceremoniously begins with a bread-breaking and ribbon-cutting at 7:45 a.m. The first 500 shoppers Wednesday through Sunday will receive a complimentary commemorative Whole Foods Market tote bag.
On the Shelves and In the Aisles

The new Whole Foods Market store offers a vast array of tempting foods and delights, sure to please even the most discerning palate. Featuring restaurant-quality prepared foods and the convenience of one-stop grocery shopping, the store features a number of unique and enticing elements chosen specifically with the Northalsted community in mind. Our extensive market research identified that the community is typically on the move, would like to get their shopping done efficiently and eats a high percentage of prepared foods weekly, versus homemade foods. This research led us to create this store with:

    A vast array of delicious, all-natural and organic prepared foods:
        Freshly prepared pizza baked in a brick oven
        Made-to-order sushi
        Hot seafood chowders and soups
        Meat carving sandwich station
        Global cuisine
        Vegetarian and vegan fare
        A chefs case full of freshly prepared fare from Sonoma Chicken Salad and Portobello Spring Rolls to Almond & Dill Crusted Sole and Grilled Marinated Lamb Salad
    Up to 20 unique flavors of gourmet, bistro-style gelato and sorbet – more than anywhere else in the neighborhood
    An espresso, coffee and tea bar
    An “enomatic” or Taste of Vino machine, allowing customers to taste a one-ounce pour of up to 16 varieties of wine
    20 register lanes to reduce traffic for the busy Northalsted shopper
    Free indoor parking with a $10 minimum purchase

Also featured at this Chicago location:

    More than 200 varieties of seasonal and local produce, at least 100 of which are certified organic, with an emphasis on local
    More than 200 varieties of natural and organic cheeses
    More than 50 varieties of fresh seafood and shellfish, including wild Alaskan salmon and fresh sea bass; all harvested from sustainable practices
    A large variety of choice custom-cut meats, including, dry-aged beef, and 20 varieties of fresh, made in-house sausages
    Freshly baked artisan breads, cookies, pastries, muffins and other flavorful baked goods from the store’s in-house bakery
    A robust and exciting selection of olives, handcrafted butters and cheeses
    A vast array of vegetarian and vegan choices
    A large selection of luxurious natural body care items and cosmetics
    Advanced nutritional supplements and vitamins
    A beautiful selection of fresh-cut flowers and plants
    Essential grocery staples, including Whole Foods Market’s own 365 Everyday Value™ and 365 Organic Everyday Value™ signature lines of products offering the same high standards for taste and quality – at everyday value prices

About our Team Members

Whole Foods Market, which created nearly 200 jobs in the Northalsted community, has been named by Fortune magazine as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” in America for ten consecutive years – every year since the list’s inception.

“Whole Foods Market celebrates diversity and embraces all lifestyles through our widely unique workforce. We’re proud that our Team Members are truly passionate about sharing the joys of great-tasting food and natural lifestyle choices with others,” Marciniak says.
Commitment to the Community

Whole Foods Market has a history of establishing a deep commitment to each of the communities it serves. “We’re looking forward to putting down roots and becoming an integral part of the Northalsted community,” Marciniak comments.

As part of that commitment, Whole Foods Market holds quarterly Community Support Days, in which five percent of a day’s gross sales are donated to a local non-profit organization. The store will also work extensively with the Center on Halsted to provide food for their cooking classroom, citywide festival partnerships and other support initiatives on an ongoing basis.