Whole Foods' New Collab Puts Consumers in Right 'Headspace'

Retailer intros mood-brightening recipe videos, curated meditations and mindful exercises
Marian Zboraj, Progressive Grocer
Whole Foods' New Collab Puts Consumers in the Right 'Headspace'
The collaboration between Whole Foods Market and Headspace includes three meditations focused on mindful shopping.

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed added strain on the population's mental health. Whole Foods Market is aiming to alleviate this added stress by collaborating with online company Headspace to help consumers put mindfulness on the menu — offering a series of mood-brightening IGTV recipes called "Food for Mood," three new meditations focused on mindful shopping, a one-month free trial of Headspace Plus, and more.

A recent online survey among 2,155 adults age 18 and older, conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Whole Foods, found that 85% of U.S. respondents would like to take steps to improve their overall well-being (e.g., health and happiness — both physically and mentally) a year into the pandemic. Connecting with food is also a priority, with 79% of consumers saying that they want to learn to eat more mindfully.

“After a year of dramatically shifting routines and priorities, we know customers are eager to reprioritize well-being, and the beginning of spring is a great time to reset your meals and renew your mind,” said Kylie Bentley, registered dietitian and team leader for nutrition and compliance at Whole Foods Market, a wholly owned subsidiary of Amazon. “Whole Foods Market is a well-known destination for nutritious food that inspires wholesome meals. Now, together with Headspace, we are able to provide exciting tools for mindfulness.”

The cross-platform collaboration offers the tools needed to reprioritize physical and mental well-being by tapping into positive moods associated with certain foods. Consumers can visit headspace.com/wholefoodsmarket to start the full experience.

“Mindful eating is so much more than just paying attention to our food — it encompasses finding joy and inspiration in our shopping, being present and intentional with our meal preparation, savoring what’s on our plate, and developing a greater awareness of how it makes us feel or contributes to our well-being,” said Eve Lewis, director of meditation at Santa Monica, California-based Headspace. “Our goal at Headspace is to improve the health and happiness of the world, and we’re thrilled to work with Whole Foods Market to spark more inspiration and refresh our mindset around our daily routines and experiences with food.”

Reaching 70 million users in 190 countries, Headspace was one of the first meditation apps in the world and remains a leader in mindfulness and mental training.

Customers visiting Whole Foods’ IGTV page can watch the first episode of an original IGTV series featuring recipes created by chef, food and welfare advocate Sophia Roe, in collaboration with Whole Foods Market and Harvard nutritional psychiatrist, chef and author of “This Is Your Brain on Food,” Dr. Uma Naidoo. In each of the four "Food for Mood" episodes, rolling out through the end of March, the experts share mood-brightening recipes and feature a fun, food-filled conversation about how we can mindfully connect with our food and take time to care for ourselves. Episodes highlight specific ingredients and tips to inspire one of four positive moods: joyful, energized, focused and relaxed.

The first national certified-organic grocer, Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods has more than 500 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The grocer is No. 24 on The PG 100 list, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America, while Seattle-based Amazon is No. 2 on PG’s list.

Recently, Whole Foods extended its primary wholesale grocery distribution agreement with United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI), the term of which now runs until Sept. 27, 2027.

“UNFI plays a key role in ensuring Whole Foods Market is able to meet the growing demand for high-quality products across our network of stores and facilities,” said Bart Beilman, SVP of supply chain and retail operations at Whole Foods. “We’re pleased to continue our strong and long-standing partnership with UNFI.”

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