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Whole Foods Listed As 2010 World's Most Ethical Companies

AUSTIN, TX. -  Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ: WFMI), the leading natural and organic foods supermarket, is pleased to announce that it has been recognized on the Ethisphere Institute's 2010 "World's Most Ethical Companies" list.

Whole Foods Market is one of only three companies named in the "Food Stores" category.

The annual "World's Most Ethical Companies" list is developed by Ethisphere Institute, an international think tank dedicated to the creation, advancement and sharing of best practices in business ethics, corporate social responsibility, anti-corruption and sustainability.

Through comprehensive research and a multi-step analysis, Ethisphere reviewed thousands of nominations from companies in more than 100 countries and 36 industries in order to determine the 100 winners in various categories.

"Our core values are the very heart of the business philosophy that drives Whole Foods Market's unique culture, growth and success," said Michael Besancon, Whole Foods Market senior global vice president of purchasing, distribution and marketing. "We base all of our business practices on our passion for natural and organic foods, our commitment to our communities and our respect for the planet. We are honored to be recognized by Ethisphere as a company with a conscience."

The 2010 "World's Most Ethical Companies" list consists of companies with at least 100 employees and greater than $50 million in annual revenue. Companies are not ranked but must meet certain criteria and are evaluated in several categories including: codes of ethics, litigation and regulatory infraction histories; investment in innovation and sustainable business practices; and corporate citizenship. The evaluation process also incorporates a study of nominations from senior executives, industry peers, suppliers and customers.

The "World's Most Ethical Companies" list is included in the Q1 issue of the quarterly magazine Ethisphere and at

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