National Consumer News

FDA letter says Whole Foods is unsanitary and unacceptable


By: Grant Suneson, Newsy

Once the go-to organic grocer, Whole Foods has had a rough past few years, and a new letter from the Food and Drug Administration could make things a lot worse.

The FDA recently published the letter it sent to Whole Foods after inspectors visited a Massachusetts food manufacturing facility in February. The visit went poorly, to say the least.

Inspectors found more than 20 separate violations, including vegetables being prepared under a leaky drainage pipe, workers failing to wash their hands between tasks and the presence of listeria-causing bacteria.

The company responded to the violations in March, but the FDA said the response was unacceptable because Whole Foods failed to prove it had corrected the problems.

After the letter went public, Whole Foods’ stock price dipped 2.5 percent.

And that’s not the first time Whole Foods has seen a significant dip. In 2015, its shares dropped by more than a third after a string of bad PR.

The grocer settled with regulators after a New York City store was accused of overcharging customers. That reputation grew after a California store was found selling a bottle of water with three sticks of asparagus in it for $5.99.

Whole Foods also issued two recalls last October due to concerns that some salad bar ingredients might’ve been contaminated with listeria.

The company insists it’s gotten back on track. Vice President Ken Meyer said that Whole Foods “opened our doors to inspectors regularly since February and worked with them to address every issue brought to our attention.”


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