September 14, 2009

Customer Pressure Forced Whole Foods to Add Kosher Poultry

Los Angeles…The announcement by Whole Foods Market that it would carry a line of certified kosher, antibiotic-free chicken in time for Rosh Hashanah, resulted from consumer pressure, sources told KosherToday. The poultry is produced by Hain-Celestial Foods and is certified by the Orthodox Union and Rabbi Yechiel Babad. The announcement here has set off a kosher poultry war since Trader Joe's and some Ralphs and Albertsons stores also carry kosher poultry. The sources say that the chain has in recent years dramatically stepped up its kosher offering and that many kosher shoppers are more confident about the natural and organic products sold at the stores. Consumer pressure is also credited for the new major role of food discount chains that have also increased their kosher offerings. One distributor said that the “kosher customer is very vocal and when they want a product, they let management know.” It apparently had the desired effect with Whole Foods.