Whole Foods expanding in Hawaii, no store for Kauai

  • photo courtesy of Whole Foods

    Another Whole Foods Market is opening on Oahu, adding to the company’s more than 400 stores nationwide, but there are no plans for a store on Kauai.

LIHUE — The doors of Hawaii’s newest Whole Foods Market will be opening in May, but Kauai residents will still have to buy an airline ticket to get there.

In fact, stores are being built in New Jersey, Indiana, California, North Carolina, British Columbia and at Ward Village on Oahu; but The Garden Island isn’t on the list of locations for Whole Foods’ 470-plus stores.

“Nothing to confirm at this time for Kauai,” said Whole Foods public relations specialist Melissa Kubrin.

The store, which touts itself as “America’s healthiest grocery store”, specializes in fresh produce and healthy food products and currently has three stores statewide — in the Kahala Mall, Kailua and the Maui Mall.

The chain first opened in 1980 in Austin, Texas. In August 2017, Amazon.com and Whole Foods merged in a $13.4 billion deal that has resulted in changes to some stores like home delivery options, gadgets in grocery stores and occasional price cuts.

On Kauai, health food stores include Hoku Foods Natural Market and Papaya’s Natural Foods in Kapaa, Healthy Hut Market & Cafe in Kilauea, and Vim and Vigor in Lihue; though other stores contain health food items.

May will bring a 72,000-square-foot, two-level Whole Foods Market to Ward Village and Whole Foods is filling 300 positions for the new store. Located between two planned condominium projects — Anaha and Waiea — the store is part of an effort to transform Ward Village into a new center of commerce for Honolulu.

  1. John clayton March 20, 2018 5:15 am Reply

    Forget it. Its called “Whole Wallet” and “whole paycheck” on the ML. Everything is extremely expensive. I don’t believe one would last here for very long. We aren’t missing anything.

    1. Jude March 20, 2018 2:22 pm Reply

      That used to be true. Not anymore!

    2. LivinAloHa March 21, 2018 7:50 am Reply

      Not since Amazon bought it, 1/3-1/2 cheaper.

  2. No_They_Didn't March 20, 2018 1:36 pm Reply

    Very good. But will the community support It? More fresh vegetables, vitamins, whole foods.

    Is ( one single location )

    Maybe there hardly is a market for it. Too pricey.

  3. No_They_Didn't March 20, 2018 1:59 pm Reply

    Try look at your politics there. All dead beats and lose at best. Why would any businessmen want to build his business on Kauai with that incompetence? Makes a lot of sense to me or you, right

  4. Josh February 17, 2019 10:47 am Reply

    Kauai has no real healthy options. Vim and vigor or a small store with hardly anything. Papayas is a small specialty store that’s insanely expensive. Of course the people of Kauai would welcome whole foods. There are no better options here. Hopefully they come at some point. Our food options are terrible on Kauai. All the restaurants buy their produce at Costco. It’s all the same crap

  5. Mary ellen September 23, 2019 3:13 pm Reply

    When are you going to open a Whole Foods store in Kailua Kona hi
    We only have one natural food store with limited selections and variety please answer

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