Whole Foods Market to open Asheville grocery store on Aug. 26


Here’s the press release:

Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ: WFM) will open its Asheville location for business Tuesday, Aug. 26. The store is located at 4 South Tunnel Rd. at the new Asheville Market.

The grocery store’s grand opening will reveal 35,000 square feet and features including the Tunnel Road Tap Haus, an upper-level beer garden with 12 taps pouring local brew and kombucha.

Shoppers can get an early look at the new store during sneak-preview tours offered Aug. 22 and 23. Online registration is required to secure a 45-minute tour between the hours of 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Aug. 22, and between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Aug. 23. A suggested donation of $5 to benefit local nonprofit Muddy Sneakers will be accepted at the door. Tour groups will be among the first to see the store’s features and enjoy complimentary food sampling.

“It’s been gratifying getting to know the community these past several months—from our neighbors to the 175 team members who’ll work at the store and the local suppliers whose products will be on our shelves,” said Tony Sgro, Store Team Leader for Whole Foods Market Asheville.

“We’re eager to finally open our doors, offer a great shopping experience, and deepen our relationship with the community,” he added.

Regular store hours will be 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Information about events, community giving programs and more will be available on the store’s website, and the conversation and photo-sharing are under way on its FacebookTwitter and Instagrampages.

Sister store Greenlife Grocery, located at 70 Merrimon Ave., is the company’s other Asheville location.




skippy August 6, 2014 - 6:14 pm

coming from the eastside, i for one am stoked about this. easy access to a ‘natural’ food store without getting on 240, merrimon, or hendersonville rd.

Smytty August 8, 2014 - 1:24 pm

So, you’d rather deal with Tunnel Rd? Geez.

Whole Foods, for whatever reason, has a history of building their stores in places that are already existing traffic clusterfudges.

ashevillain August 9, 2014 - 11:10 am

I agree with skippy.

“So, you’d rather deal with Tunnel Rd? Geez.”

For people who live in E. Asheville, there is no choice but to deal with Tunnel Rd…you have to drive on Tunnel Rd. to get to anywhere else…and it’s not that bad.

Merrimon Ave, Haywood Rd and Patton Ave, Hendersonville Rd…those are all much worse.

weavervilleman August 10, 2014 - 7:58 pm

Tunnel road isnt that bad compared to biltmore Avenue and merrimon Avenue

smytty August 11, 2014 - 7:53 am

I suppose it is all relative. I avoid Tunnel Rd at all costs. I suppose if there were a large shopping mall, a Target, a Walmart, et al on Merrimon it might be comparable. As it is, I avoid both.

dvk August 6, 2014 - 2:33 pm

Great, another store on Tunnel Road that is inaccessible by walking or riding one’s bicycle. You’d think a progressive, health-conscious company like Whole Foods would incorporate multi-modal transportation considerations into choosing their new AVL store location.

Matt August 6, 2014 - 6:14 pm

They were going to build on Merrimon, which would fit your standards, but they just bought GL instead…does that work for you?

Chris Pelly August 8, 2014 - 1:04 pm

Pedestrian access is improved and there is now sidewalk the length of Tunnel Road.

ashevillain August 9, 2014 - 11:13 am

That’s a bit of an exaggeration…but it’s better than it was.

There are still a number of sidewalk-less spots on Tunnel Rd. The crosswalks are not very safe either…timing on the traffic signals needs to be revised and it would help with this.

JML August 6, 2014 - 10:10 am

could really use an organic market in North North AVL /Weaverville

weavervilleman August 10, 2014 - 7:59 pm

Levis pantry is a good local spot

ncnc August 5, 2014 - 10:05 pm

So, how great that there will be beer on tap at a place you must drive to and from. Does this mean that Tunnel Rd. will be even more treacherous after the entitleds get their drink on, oh, excuse me: their organic, locally produced, vegan, fadish drink on?

ashevillain August 9, 2014 - 11:14 am

“So, how great that there will be beer on tap at a place you must drive to and from.”

LOL. You mean like almost every single bar and restaurant ever built?

boatrocker August 5, 2014 - 7:24 pm

Mmmm, noveau riche families can eat well.
Screw the rest.

weavervilleman August 5, 2014 - 11:39 pm

FYI, whole foods aint all that expensive.

Adam August 6, 2014 - 10:35 am

It is affectionately called “Whole Paycheck” for a reason.

ashevillain August 6, 2014 - 11:58 am

Yeah…because people with an agenda go in and pick out the most expensive things in the store and say “see, look how expensive this place is!”

You could portray the same phenomenon at any store…even Ingles.

The “whole paycheck” thing is senseless. It’s not that expensive.

Adam August 7, 2014 - 6:27 pm

I can’t think of a more expensive grocery store, on the whole… except Katuah, perhaps.

AVL LVR August 6, 2014 - 10:39 am

Whole Foods is expensive, yet if you buy only sales you end up pretty good (about the only thing I don’t buy on sale is their soft ginger cookies in their bakery dept…so good!). In the long run, eating cheap junk artificial “food” could cost you a lot more. How much is your health worth?

Like Ingles and the Publix debate, Earth Fare and the local coops and Katuah are the local guys. I hope they stay open. They seemed to be spaced apart somewhat and the population is slowly growing, so the impact may not be devastating. And yes despite preferring the local guy, I will be shopping at Whole Foods to get the sales and ginger cookies.

Scott August 6, 2014 - 10:44 am

I’m confused. Are you saying Ingles is not “the local guy?”

AVL LVR August 6, 2014 - 10:45 am

In another post I said we should support Ingles because it is local and a great store.

AVL LVR August 6, 2014 - 11:02 am

Buy local means money stays local. I know supporting local businesses seem selfish, but I’ve seen towns where Wal-Mart moves in and the whole downtown nearly closes with just a few thrift or consignment shops left. Before moving back to North Carolina where I grew up, I lived near Claremont, NH. Instead of the local leaders trying to entice industry back, they were attracting Wal-Mart, Staples and all the big boys which pay slave wages. Their downtown became a ghost town and people continue to leave the area. I am a Republican (mainly for moral reasons) and favor the free market, yet we must take care of our own first. I have no problem in increasing benefits for American citizens as technology makes it possible and labor redundant. You will find the Republican leaders of the past like Abraham Lincoln weren’t so laissez faire like Ron Paul. They would step in to promote industry and tariffs which protected labor.

AVL LVR August 10, 2014 - 8:07 pm

Oh geez, another person against corporate companies

Big Al August 6, 2014 - 1:09 pm

But they are an “evil corporation” who “prefer profits over people” and “yada yada yada”.

Toe the party line!!!

Big Al August 7, 2014 - 2:46 am

Let me rephrase:

Toe the party line, COMRADE!!!

AVL LVR August 7, 2014 - 9:39 am

There is no reason to toe the party line if it is wrong. The Republican party line has changed several times. After the 1960s during the Realignment where The South became Republican, it adopted more southern ideals like states rights and free trade. Recently, it has become more libertarian, though, fortunately the tea party candidates have been recently losing to incumbents in Alabama and Kansas. Another change could provide more benefits for the elderly, veterans etc. (perhaps creating new rights) as long it sticks to ideals found in the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The Democrats want to remove rights (gun rights, freedom of the parents, education, religion etc.). The Republicans need to support industry even with subsidies. I would subsidize environmental compliances. I would promote coal and oil. The Democrats don’t understand they are a major economic driver, though certainly not the only. Qatar, the richest country per capita, is based on oil. Bakken Oil is keeping us alive right now (fortunately it is in a Republican state where Obama can’t stop it). I would also promote R&D for the clean energy of the future.

I applaud Whole Foods for limiting CEO pay and giving it to the workers instead. Ingles could learn a thing or two. I will still shop at Ingles. Comparing Ingles to Publix, at least Ingles employs more local workers in the distribution facility and offices and the profits stay local.

AVL Kid August 6, 2014 - 11:32 am

Just to clarify, Earth Fare isn’t local. It might have been founded here but a Canadian equity firm owns a majority share of the company. Additionally, Whole Foods pays a living wage to it’s employees in Asheville which is not the case with Ingles or Earth Fare.

roo August 6, 2014 - 1:36 pm

Actually, Earth Fare is owned by Oak Hill Capital, which also operates a nationwide chain of truck stops.

AVL LVR August 6, 2014 - 2:51 pm

Good to know.

Matt August 6, 2014 - 5:54 pm

Yeah. Since they were bought up by Oak Hill they started including corn syrup in their hot bar and soups, they started purchasing their deli foods from more distant warehouses, they increased the number of conventional foods on the shelves, and they started hawking their ‘tomato bank’ thingy. They also stopped doing the hot bar half off after 8, and now they just throw the food away. These are some of the effects of corporate buyouts. I guess a silver lining is that they are more resilient to local economy swings.

I wonder how pay was effected.

If you’re curious about all the companines EF is in bed with now, including Burger King subsidiaries, check it out: http://www.oakhillcapital.com/portfolio/details/index.html#ability

Stu Helm August 7, 2014 - 7:18 am

Thank you for this info, Matt!

smytty August 7, 2014 - 9:11 am

I still miss the bacon on the breakfast bar. 🙁 I wrote to the manager about it several times and was told “it’s being looked into.”

What is there to look into?

Kelly Boodram August 6, 2014 - 6:00 pm

Great comment and so very true!

Chester August 8, 2014 - 12:31 pm

Republican for moral reasons?

The way I see it it is much easier to give someone the finger than to lend a helping hand.

weavervilleman August 10, 2014 - 8:02 pm

Earth fare is not completely local. They have locations in florida and Georgia. Earth fare is similar to ingles on a business standpoint.

Captain Buyout August 5, 2014 - 1:18 pm

F**k Whole Foods (the Wal-Mart of ‘natural’ foods)

weavervilleman August 10, 2014 - 8:05 pm

Dont let the door hit you on the way out.

Bob August 5, 2014 - 12:30 pm

Another place with beer taps thru the wall. Incredible!

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