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Federal Judge Rules That Whole Foods Merger Will Not Raise Prices on Consumers

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

(Photo: Courtesy of Whole Foods Market, Cary, NC)

Tom Fudge: A federal appeals court is now deciding whether to put a stay on a judge's decision that the purchase of Wild Oats , by Whole Foods , can go forward. You may have heard that the powerful natural food grocer, based in Texas, made an offer to purchase Wild Oats. Wild Oats, also a natural food seller, owns more than a hundred stores, including Henry's in San Diego.

The Federal Trade Commission argued that the Whole Foods purchase deal would be anti-competitive. They presented evidence that Whole Foods planned to close many Wild Oats stores and, hopefully, absorb their business. But Judge Paul Friedman disagreed. If the sale does go forward, it is likely to affect the choices San Diegans have about where they shop for natural foods and how much they pay for them.

Guest

  • Scott Horsley, business reporter for NPR. 

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