Whole Foods Vs. the People

1202836162Recently, I ran into a friend who was carrying one of those fabric grocery bags. This is a guy who regularly sneaks aluminum cans into the garbage, so his eco-shopping sack roused my suspicion. He explained that Whole Foods had decided to stop offering disposable plastic bags, and to herald the event, the store was offering free corporate-logo bags to the first 100 shoppers. Was this a noble Whole Foods effort to modify our environmentally unfriendly habits? Or was it part of a vast Whole Foods plot to shame us into purchasing our redemption?

To uncover who stood to benefit from a plastic bag-free world, Bostonista combed through recent news reports, then tallied the results. Here’s what we found:

1. Whole Foods says we can buy as many plastic-packaged products as we want, as long as we don’t take them home in a plastic shopping bag, the only thing they give away for free. Winner: Whole Foods. Us: looking for a way to clean up after the dog.

2. Inspired by Whole Foods’ example, we decide we will no longer treat plastic so cavalierly or carelessly. This means that rather than chucking the empty plastic bottles from which we swig our designer water, we’ll reuse and refill them. Wrong: Once empty, the bottles are pretty much toxic waste. Winner: Whole Foods. Us: poisoned

3. Alert! What will really kill us isn’t the water but recreational sex! What will really kill us isn’t the water but recreational sex! Or at least what the New York Times refers to as “the abortion pill.” So get married. Fast. And Whole Foods is hands-down, the best pick-up joint for upscale mates. Winner: Whole Foods. Us: panicked.

4. And now that we’re thinking about reproduction, we realize it was caffeine that prevented us from spawning a litter. Caffeine-free herbal stimulant Kombucha at $3 a bottle anyone? Winner: Whole Foods. Us: addicted.

5. But it turns out, we can make a lot of this stuff ourselves. Wash out those glass bottles and start making your own teas and smoothies. And guess what? That free fabric bag is perfect for carting empties from the dishwasher to the cabinet. Winner: Whole Foods. Us: deeply suspicious, and 99 cents poorer for having bought a fabric shopping bag.