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November 14, 2014
The John Mackey of yore might have appreciated this protest song by John Paul Wright, a Kentucky-based union organizer. But much has changed in the years since he grew the SaferWay from an idyllic small health food store to the idealistic Whole Foods Market of Dow Jones dreams.
For one, the Whole Foods Market co-CEO has touted the natural grocery store as being "beyond unions."
“Whole Foods isn’t anti-union,” Mackey has said. “Our team members are not being prevented from joining unions, they’ve chosen not to ... Why would they want to join a union? Whole Foods has been one of [FORTUNE’S] 100 best companies to work for for the last 16 years. We’re not so much anti-union as beyond unions.”
But now, a recent unionizing effort is drawing national attention. Whole Foods Market Workers Unite seeks better wages, safety considerations and improved health, vacation and retirement benefits. See the complete demands list here.
And the Whole Foods union organizers have an anthem in "A Whole Paycheck!" Click the soundwave above to hear the song posted to SoundCloud this week.
Song has a way to cut to the core. Will this one have the power to produce change for workers who say they can't afford "half the stuff that you got in your cart. Living wage and union is my wish"?
Senior Content Director, New Hope Network
As the senior content director at New Hope Network, Christine Kapperman combines her 20-year journalism background with her passion for business to cover the natural products industry for newhope.com and Natural Foods Merchandiser magazine. She also led content at worldteanews.com. She loves tracking (and tasting) trends as she shares what’s next to show up in cups, plates and in pantries across the United States.
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