Whole Foods Founder Plots New Wellness Venture

Whole Foods Market

When Whole Foods CEO & co-founder John Mackey exits Amazon, his next venture will be wellness.

What’s happening: Behind the scenes of his planned departure, Mackey has been getting Healthy America LLC, an “evidence-based lifestyle company,” off the ground.

After raising $31M earlier this year, the company aims to combine plant-based eats, alternative medicine, and fitness/spa services under one banner.

Joined by ex-Whole Foods execs Betsy Foster and Walter Robb, the group is planning a chain of stores that “maximize overall health.”

For context: The visionary behind Whole Foods Market’s healthy ethos, Mackey is largely credited with bringing organic food into the mainstream. Once mocked as “hippies selling food to other hippies,” Amazon acquired the retailer for $13.7B in 2017.

Now, with plant-based cafes, spa and fitness services, and lifestyle medicine that blends Eastern and Western practices, Mackey wants Americans to take a more holistic approach to well-being.

All-in-one. As wellness becomes an essential part of everyday life, brands are moving in from all angles, hoping to offer a more integrated experience.

  • Alo Yoga’s NYC Flatiron location includes a plant-based, rooftop restaurant.
  • Social clubs like HEIMAT and Remedy Place build communities around holistic wellcare.
  • Equinox Hotel embodies high performance with an onsite gym, spa, and healthy restaurant.

Of note, with Amazon buying One Medical, Mackey’s current employer is working on its own integrated offering as his next act takes shape.

Takeaway: With Healthy America, John Mackey is hoping to start another movement — one built on the common knowledge that eating healthier, moving more, and stressing less lead to a healthier life.

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