Whole Foods lowered their prices. Can Trader Joe’s and Publix compete? We found out.

Amazon slashed prices at Whole Foods Markets on many grocery store staples to mark the completion of its $13.7 billion purchase Monday. Signs co-branded Whole Foods and Amazon noted previous and new, lower prices on many of those items, and in-store shoppers could even purchase an Amazon Echo in many stores. Carlos Frías/Miami Herald cfrias@miamiherald.com

Attention Publix and Trader Joe’s shoppers: Amazon wants you to clean up in the aisles at Whole Foods Market.

To punctuate its $13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods on Monday, Amazon slashed prices on many grocery store staples, from eggs and milk to meats and pasta sauce. The grocery store chain that earned the “Whole Paycheck” moniker for premium products at premium prices has been struggling to compete with traditional supermarkets, which have started to offer organic and thoughtfully sourced products.

Amazon wants to change all that. It’s touting lower prices on everyday products at its new grocery store chain, and has made it known to shoppers with orange signs throughout the stores that link Amazon and Whole Food’s names.

But would it be enough to sway shoppers at its direct competitors in South Florida, Publix and Trader Joe’s?
 

We compared Whole Foods prices on 10 items it reduced this week (with the original prices in parentheses) to comparable items at Publix and Trader Joe’s. Obviously, prices change. But if you had bought all of these items on Aug. 29, here’s what you would have spent at each grocery store:

 
IMG_2392
Signs co-branded Whole Foods and Amazon noted previous and new, lower prices on many of those items, including farm-raised salmon.
Carlos Frías/Miami Herald cfrias@miamiherald.com

▪ PUBLIX: $54.86

What you can’t get anywhere else: Publix chicken tender subs, obviously. No other grocery store does them like this.

▪ TRADER JOE’S: $41.50

What you can’t get anywhere else: Cookie butter! Almond butter wishes it were cookie butter.

▪ WHOLE FOODS: $43.70

What you can’t get anywhere elseYou can now buy an Amazon Echo in the store. Technology!

Clearly Whole Foods/Amazon has Trader Joe’s in its sights. South Floridians may love their Publix, but on the following 10 common staples, Trader Joe’s provides the best bang for the buck, with Whole Foods close behind. Note that this doesn’t take into account staples like toilet paper and detergent. Here’s a look at the prices on the 10 items we shopped:

1. Organic Gala Apples

Publix: $1.38 a pound

Trader Joe’s: $1.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $1.99 ($2.99)

2. Tomatoes on the Vine (Conventional)

Publix: $2.79 a pound

Trader Joe’s: $1.59 a pound

Whole Foods: $1.99 ($2.50)

3. Farm-raised Salmon

Publix: $12.39 a pound

Trader Joe’s: $10.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $9.99 ($10.49)

4. Whole Organic Chicken, store brand

Publix: $3.89

Trader Joe’s: $2.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $2.99 a pound ($3.49)

5. Ground beef, 85 percent lean beef/15 percent fat mix (conventional)

Publix: $4.69

Trader Joe’s: $4.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $4.99 ($5.99)

6. Organic Whole Milk, half gallon, store brand

Publix: $4.99

Trader Joe’s: $3.49

Whole Foods: $3.49 ($3.99)

7. Organic Unsalted Butter, 16 ounces, store brand

Publix: $6.69

Trader Joe’s: $2.99

Whole Foods: $4.49 ($5.99)

8. Organic Large Brown Eggs, store brand

Publix: $4.95

Trader Joe’s: $3.99

Whole Foods: $3.99 ($4.99)

9. Almond Butter, 16 ounces, store brand

Publix: $9.99

Trader Joe’s: $5.99

Whole Foods: $6.99 ($7.99)

10. Organic Marinara Sauce, 25 ounces, store brand

Publix $3.10 ($6.19 for 2)

Trader Joe’s: $2.49

Whole Foods: $2.79 ($2.99)

cookiebutter
If Trader Joe’s has an intangible advantage, it’s cookie butter, the sweet spreadable cookie-flavored Speculoos.
Amy Reyes/Miami Herald areyes@miamiherald.com

HERE ARE HOW SOME OTHER POPULAR ITEMS COMPARED:

Organic Fuji Apples

Publix: $1.89 (not organic)

Trader Joe’s: $1.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $1.99 (down from $2.99)

Organic Hass Avocados

Publix: None available the day we shopped

Trader Joe’s: None available the day we shopped

Whole Foods: $1.99 ($2.99)

Conventional Hass Avocados

Publix: $4 for 2

Trader Joe’s: $2.31 four pack

Whole Foods: $1.49 ($2.99)

Organic Bananas

Publix: $0.89 a pound

Trader Joe’s: $0.25 each

Whole Foods: $0.69 a pound ($0.99)

Bananas (Conventional)

Publix: $0.69

Trader Joe’s: $0.19 each

Whole Foods: $0.49 ($0.69)

Farm-raised Tilapia

Publix: $7.99 a pound (on sale Thursday for $5.99)

Trader Joe’s: $5.99 a pound (frozen)

Whole Foods: $7.99 ($9.99)

Whole Chicken, store brand

Publix: $8.49

Trader Joe’s: None available the day we shopped

Whole Foods: $1.99 a pound ($2.49)

New York Strip (conventional)

Publix: $11.25 a pound

Trader Joe’s: $14.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $13.99 ($16.99)

Rib Eye Steak (conventional)

Publix: $18.61

Trader Joe’s: $13.99 a pound

Whole Foods: $13.99 ($16.99)

Organic Plain Yogurt, 2 pounds, store brand

Publix: $3.60 ($7.19 for 2)

Trader Joe’s: $3.29

Whole Foods: $4.69

Organic Shredded Mozzarella, 16 ounces, store brand

Publix: $7.99 (not organic)

Trader Joe’s: $4.99 (8-ounce pack)

Whole Foods: $4.79 ($4.99)

Organic Shredded Mexican Blend Cheese, 12 ounces, store brand

Publix: $5.19 (6 ounces)

Trader Joe’s: $3.99 (not organic)

Whole Foods: $6.99 ($7.49)

Organic Shredded Cheddar Cheese, 12 ounces, store brand

Publix: $5.19 (6 ounces)

Trader Joe’s: $3.99 (not organic)

Whole Foods: $6.99 ($7.49)

Spring Water, 12 pack, 16.9 ounce bottles, store brand

Publix: $2.49

Trader Joe’s: $3.99 (24 pack)

Whole Foods: $2.49 ($2.99)

Cage-free White Eggs, store brand

Publix: $2.59

Trader Joe’s: $2.99 (brown)

Whole Foods: $2.99 ($3.69)

Marinara Sauce, Conventional, 25 ounces, store brand

Publix: $2.60 ($5.19 for 2)

Trader Joe’s: $1.79

Whole Foods: $2.79 ($2.99)

Almond Milk, Half Gallon, store brand

Publix: $2.79 (Silk brand)

Trader Joe’s: $2.99

Whole Foods: $2.99 ($3.99)

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