There are few most famous and largest stores working in grocery and health food stores industry in UK and USA. One of them is Whole Food store that is a retailer of natural and organic foods and other groceries. The Company is operating segments of natural and organic foods supermarkets in which national and international brands are available in their stores. The paper will discuss the marketing strategies, concepts and distribution strategy that the company used to attain competitive edge in the market.
1. Marketing concepts
Herein, it must be noted that with the passage of time there are many other brands that are coming in the market and providing customers’ needs and demands. Those brands are grabbing the customer focus from Whole Foods products. It is affecting their sales and their revenues. It is the reason due to which whole foods company used societal marketing concept for their products and increased the number of stores. In order to do that the company focused on the production concept as well. With the use of both marketing concepts the company analyzed the needs, and wants and interests of the consumers and their target market. After analyzing that they desired to deliver the products to increase the level of satisfaction among customers. Then, with the use of the production concept the company is making their products widely available and inexpensive. The reason is that the competitors are also offering the inexpensive products to the customers by promising the quality. It was taking the customers focus towards those brands therefore; Whole Foods Company came up with the new idea and modern marketing concepts. Thus, Whole Foods announced new chain of smaller stores named "365 Everyday Value" in which they were offering lower prices for their daily routine products.
2. Marketing strategies
Considering the tough competition in the market, Whole Foods Market, Inc. use formidable marketing skills to attain the competitive edge in the market. To grow more in the market, they took help from organic farmers as their services were more efficient and reliable. Herein, it must be noted that Whole Foods used various methods to create awareness about the advantages of eating organic food and diet. In order to do that different marketing tool were used by the company and use of technology was increased in their stores. The use of all media forums and helped the company to market their new idea and spread advantages and disadvantages of organic food.
3. Marketing goals and objectives for implementing the strategies
Whole Foods Market has build relationship with organic farmers to bring the organic products in the market. The grocers have increased the interest towards organic products including organic fruits, organic vegetables and flowers in American appetite. The company has taken a step to market its farmers by associating the product with the farmer’s name.
As the time is passing, the relationship between whole foods and farmers is facing disputes as the competition of whole foods from mainstream grocery stores is increasing in that case, organic farmers have greater opportunities to make their products available and display in various stores and grocery chains.
It is also acclaimed by the farmers that the marketing strategies applied by the whole foods is dreadful and misleading the target audience. Whole Foods adopted the marketing strategy by categorizing the food items by its quality standards with the options “good”, “better” and “best”.
The company, Whole Foods also runs the program called Responsibly Grown in which farmers were granted with a federal organic certification. The program was later criticized by the suppliers that nonorganic farmers were also in the scale of same ratings as organic farmers, despite meeting the strict requirements for certification.
The strategy to give higher ranking to the conventional farmers over organic growers was based upon the policy of reducing dump, and adopting recycling techniques for garbage, relying on energy sources and abolishing some specific pesticides which can cause harm and setting a particular area of field for conservation.
Whole Foods developed the strategy to certify the farmers with federal certifications for organic food by giving ranks. The ranking strategy helped the company significantly and increased the competition among farmers. Whole foods have to bear the mainstream competition by well known branded grocery chains like Wal-Mart, Costco, and Safeway. The increase in competition among farmers helped the company in the department of the supply chain.
The company has created demand for organic fruits in comparison with conventional fruits that significantly helped the company to increase sales and make valuable profits. With the increase in demand, the company estimated the growth rate of the organic fruits and set the premium pricing on the highly demanded organic fruits which eventually resulted in great profit and market growth situation (Strom, 2015).
The company is now aimed to adopt the strategy of cost leadership by competing with lower prices offering stores. The company has now established many small stores aimed to target millennial shoppers. The plan of new stores with its private label line, 365 shall be used to sell the branded goods as well (The Associated Press, 2015).
In the new stores with the name “365” will be used to sell fresh food with high quality. The company has not announced that the stores are going to sell organic food.
The company had best offering for organic food as the company was the buyer of half of the organic food of the country. But now the company is competing with conventional food items in the supermarkets.
The strategy of giving ranking to the farmers was quite offensive for the farmers growing organic food. Many farmers criticized and quit supplying to whole foods and expressed the aggression towards rating system. And now many of the farmers growing organic foods are expecting new policies and ranking system to be developed by Whole Foods that create a major difference between organic and conventional food.
The product mix of Whole food is based on the range of fruits and vegetables, both organic and conventional. The program of Responsibly Grown was developed by the company to make the supply chain process narrow and efficient.
It can be concluded that the company, Whole Foods is intended to develop the habit to adopt healthy and efficient ways in conventional growers. The company set the criteria for the farmer to match and bring their product to the best level. The program was helping to make an environment sustainable and productive. The use of pesticides by conventional farmers was the main issue that made the conflict and offended the organic growers. The company must rate the farmers according to their level and method of production and create awareness for the organic food at best prices.
Strom, Stephanie. “Organic Farmers Object to Whole Foods Rating System.” 2015 12-June. nytimes.com. Web. 2015 24-June <http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/13/business/organic-farmers-object-to-whole-foods-rating-system.html?_r=0>.
The Associated Press. “Whole Foods: New Chain to Be Named for '365' Store Brand.” 2015 11-June. nytimes.com. Web. 2015 24-June <http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/06/11/us/ap-us-whole-foods-new-chain.html>.