(Quotes are from the article.)
""Let's say you live in New York City and want to buy a pound of tomatoes in season. Say you can choose between conventionally grown New Jersey tomatoes or organic ones grown in Chile. Of course, the New Jersey tomatoes will be cheaper. They will also almost certainly be fresher, having traveled a fraction of the distance. But which is the more eco-conscious choice? In terms of energy savings, there's no contest: Just think of the fossil fuels expended getting those organic tomatoes from Chile.""
The first criticism of Whole Foods in the article is based on a hypothetical "what-if?" scenario. That's hardly impressive as a thought-excercise and utter nonsense as a criticism considering that we don't know if such a scenario has ever existed.
""Another heading on the Whole Foods banner says "Help the Small Farmer." "Buying organic," it states, "supports the small, family farmers that make up a large percentage of organic food producers." This is semantic sleight of hand. As one small family farmer in Connecticut told me recently, "Almost all the organic food in this country comes out of California. And five or six big California farms dominate the whole industry." There's a widespread misperception in this country?one that organic growers, no matter how giant, happily encourage?that "organic" means "small family farmer."""
The author insults our intelligence as readers. He cites an anonymous "small farmer in Connecticut" as if this anonymous farmer can be considered as worthy a reference as the US Census Bureau.
I don't know about you but I never had any mis-perception about the size of farms (organic or conventional) in this country.
""There are a lot of small, family-run organic farmers, but their share of the organic crop in this country, and of the produce sold at Whole Foods, is minuscule.""
First of all, where is the data? Why should I beleive what he says when he has not established himself as an authority or cited an credible reference?
""A nearby banner at the Time Warner Center Whole Foods proclaims "Our Commitment to the Local Farmer," but this also doesn't hold up to scrutiny. More likely, the burgeoning local-food movement is making Whole Foods uneasy. After all, a multinational chain can't promote a "buy local" philosophy without being self-defeating.""
This is non-sequitur. What on earth would possibly prevent a multi-national chain (that is locally managed) from purchasing locally produced foods? There is nothing self-defeating about encouraging a "buy local" philosophy. That's just idiotic.
""This winter, when I dropped by the store, the only local produce for sale was a shelf of upstate apples, but the grower profiles were still up. There was a picture of a sandy-haired organic leek farmer named Dave, from Whately, Mass., above a shelf of conventionally grown yellow onions from Oregon.""
First, the only local food in NY state in the winter is going to be apples, that's obvious. Second, who cares if they left the signs of the growers up after the food was sold out? I don't care if there is a picture of a leek-grower above the onions from Mexico because it isn't important. Calling it deceptive is childish. This is an extremely weak criticism.
As far as organic foods being only for the rich. Again, who cares? You vote with your dollars. If eating healthy is important to you then you simply forgo buying that expensive toy that you don't need in favor of buying what is more important.
I am poor as shit. My wife is in grad-school at Georgetown U. and I just graduated college and I make very little money. I still shop almost exclusively at Whole Foods because it's important to me. If that means not buying something else, oh well... I put my money where I consider it to be best spent. So fuck the whiners who say the shit is too expensive. If those whiners would start demanding healthier foods companies wouldn't be trying to sell them shitty foods. If demand increased so would supply and eventually the prices would look more normal, instead of seeming "just for the rich."
This article sucks because the criticisms are so weak that they can't even be considered worth writing. It also pisses me off to see someone looking for any little reason to piss on something that is good. On the other hand, I hope the idiot that wrote this shitty article sticks around in case Whole Foods ever becomes "not good" and they deserve to be blasted. Then he will receive my highest praise.