Whole Foods Launches 1-Hour Pickup: How It Compares To Amazon's Grocery Rivals

Whole Foods, the physical grocery store arm of Amazon.com, Inc. AMZN, announced the launch Wednesday of a new one-hour grocery pickup service exclusive for Prime members.

Late To The Party: Amazon Prime members must place an order of $35 or more to qualify for a free one-hour pickup service.

Grocery shoppers pointing out that Whole Foods' initiative isn't anything new or unique are right. Retail giant Walmart Inc WMT has been offering grocery shoppers a curbside pickup option for many years. Walmart consumers can pick a time slot that is convenient for them.

Related Link: 10 Grocery Trends Whole Foods Expects In 2021

Back in 2015, Walmart announced the expansion of a grocery pickup trial to include larger cities like Atlanta, Georgia and Tucson, Arizona, along with smaller cities like Ogden, Utah.

The years of experimenting with new methods, learning from mistakes, and data gathering has given Walmart a multiyear head start against newcomer Whole Foods.

Similarly, rival Target Corporation TGT doubled down on its grocery pickup initiative in June when it added fresh and frozen items. This option will be available to customers at more than 1,500 stores before the 2020 holiday season.

Third-party platforms can also take the hassle out of driving to the grocery store. Platforms like Instacart will deliver groceries right to the consumer at their homes.

Another Amazon Benefit: The new Whole Foods pickup initiative is available at all 487 stores in the U.S. and could be seen as a new value-added benefit for Prime members. 

While hardly groundbreaking, it could reinforce the value of being an Amazon Prime member beyond the speedy delivery of online goods.

Photo courtesy of Whole Foods. 

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