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Natural Vitality

Whole Foods educates customers on pollinators the hard way

Whole Foods educates customers on pollinators the hard way
What's all the buzz about pollinators? One Whole Foods location broke it down by pulling all produce that comes from plants dependent on pollinators. 

To raise aware­ness of just how cru­cial pol­li­na­tors are to our food sys­tem, the University Heights Whole Foods Market, Rhode Island store tem­porar­ily removed all pro­duce that comes from plants depen­dent on pol­li­na­tors. They pulled from shelves 237 of 453 products—52 per­cent of the department’s nor­mal prod­uct mix.

Products removed included:

  • Apples
  • Onions
  • Avocados
  • Carrots
  • Mangos
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Honeydew
  • Cantaloupe
  • Zucchini
  • Summer squash
  • Eggplant
  • Cucumbers
  • Celery
  • Green onions
  • Cauliflower
  • Leeks
  • Bok choy
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Broccoli rabe
  • Mustard greens

To help sup­port hon­ey­bee pop­u­la­tions, for every pound of organic sum­mer squash sold at Whole Foods Market stores from June 12-25 the com­pany will donate 10 cents to The Xerces Society for pol­li­na­tor preservation.

“Pollinators are a crit­i­cal link in our food sys­tem. More than 85 percent of Earth’s plant species—many of which com­pose some of the most nutri­tional parts of our diet—require pol­li­na­tors to exist. Yet we con­tinue to see alarm­ing declines in bee num­bers,” said Eric Mader, assis­tant pol­li­na­tor con­ser­va­tion direc­tor at The Xerces Society. “Our orga­ni­za­tion works with farm­ers nation­wide to help them cre­ate wild­flower habi­tat and adopt less pesticide-intensive prac­tices. These sim­ple strate­gies can tip the bal­ance back in favor of bees.”

Whole Foods Market offers four more ways to “bee part of the solu­tion.” Details are online at

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