Whole Foods Market Partnering with Illinois Small Businesses

Whole Foods Market partnering, Illinois small business lawyerWith the closing of Dominick’s grocery stores in locations throughout Illinois last year, the health food retail giant Whole Foods Market saw an opportunity to expand its existing operations in the state. In addition to taking over some of the closed Domnick’s grocery store locations, Whole Foods has also partnered with the City of Chicago and the local Greater Englewood Community Development Corporation to figure out ways to include local Illinois entrepreneurs and small businesses in their new operations in Illinois.

In addition to hosting three workshops with local area small businesses and entrepreneurs, Whole Foods Market has already committed itself to carrying the wares of the very same businesses to which they have reached out. This decision represents a big win for small businesses as well as future opportunities for Illinois entrepreneurs to have their goods distributed at Whole Foods locations throughout Chicago, and potentially throughout the state and country.

Whole Foods Market’s Commitment to Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs

Whole Foods Market seems committed to using their resources to provide exceptional opportunities to small businesses and entrepreneurs in the new communities where they will soon be operating. For example, the owner of Laine’s Bake Shop, a Kenwood small business started in 2013 by a 27-year-old entrepreneur, recently learned that the company plans on stocking her treats at the new Whole Foods Market location in Englewood that will be opening in 2016. The small business was accepted as a supplier for Whole Foods Market when the owner attended one of the workshops that Whole Foods Market had hosted in her community. The benefits of having a business’s wares sold at Whole Foods Market are endless, and allow businesses to expand their existing distribution base, while also making a business’ products more easily accessible.

What has been most commendable about Whole Foods’ decision to engage small business and entrepreneurs has been the apparent commitment to utilizing them as local suppliers. In fact, at the three workshops hosted by Whole Foods Market, they connected local small businesses directly with Whole Foods’ buyers, so that business owners had a chance to present their goods, create lasting contacts, and argue their case for why their goods should be offered in the new Whole Foods Market stores.

Whole Foods has gone on record stating that their goal is to find 25 new businesses to supply goods at their new locations soon opening in Chicago. In addition to providing life changing opportunities for local entrepreneurs and small businesses, Whole Foods Market is also performing a crucial service for some of Chicago’s most at-need communities. By opening stores in Englewood and other Chicago south-side communities, Whole Foods could effectively end the food deserts plaguing these communities that sadly only have access to fast food and minimal grocery store options, as opposed to the more healthy goods sold by Whole Foods Market. Furthermore, their success in Chicago could encourage Whole Foods to expand its operations throughout Illinois, and to also similarly engage other local entrepreneurs and small businesses.

If you have questions about how to get involved with Whole Foods Market, or need representation for your business, contact the Illinois small business attorneys at the Gierach Law Firm today.