Leonard Green & Partners Files Schedule 13D Disclosing Distribution of Whole Foods Market Common Shares

Leonard Green & Partners Files Schedule 13D Disclosing Distribution of Whole
Foods Market Common Shares

Mr. Sokoloff and Mr. Seiffer to Remain on Whole Foods Market's Board of

AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 20, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Whole Foods Market, Inc.
(Nasdaq:WFM) today announced that Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. has filed a
Schedule 13D announcing the distribution of approximately 11 million Whole
Foods Market commonshares to its limited partners and members. The 11 million
shares represent approximately 6% of Whole Foods Market's 185.5 million
outstanding common shares.

"Whole Foods Market has been one of the best investments in our firm's
history," said Jonathan D. Sokoloff, Managing Partner at Leonard Green &
Partners, L.P. "We have decided to distribute these shares so that each of our
investors can make their own independent decision regarding their level of
participation as a shareholder in Whole Foods' future growth. We have
tremendous respect for the leadership team and look forward to continuing to
serve on the Board of Directors."

About Whole Foods Market

Founded in 1980 in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market
(www.wholefoodsmarket.com) is the leading retailer of natural and organic
foods and America's first national "Certified Organic" grocer. In fiscal year
2012, the Company had sales of approximately $12 billion and currently has 343
stores in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.Whole Foods
Market employs over 70,000 Team Members and has been ranked for 15 consecutive
years as one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" in America by Fortune

The Whole Foods Market, Inc. logo is available at

Forward-looking statements

The following constitutes a "Safe Harbor" statement under the Private
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Except for the historical
information contained herein, the matters discussed in this press release are
forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, which could
cause our actual results to differ materially from those described in the
forward-looking statements. These risks include general business conditions,
changes in overall economic conditions that impact consumer spending,
including fuel prices and housing market trends, the impact of competition and
other risks detailed from time to time in the SEC reports of Whole Foods
Market, including Whole Foods Market's report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year
ended September 25, 2011. Whole Foods Market undertakes no obligation to
update forward-looking statements.

CONTACT: Cindy McCann
         VP of Investor Relations

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