Online Extra: How Whole Foods Prices the Staples

You can expect to pay more for organic fruit and produce, but what of such basic items as bread and toilet paper? BW finds out

Even fans sometimes refer to Whole Foods Market as "Whole Paycheck." Exquisite food, after all, rarely comes cheap. But does Whole Foods (WFMI ) induce sticker shock with the basics, too? BusinessWeek writers Diane Brady, Adrienne Carter, and Sarah Lacy did some random comparisons of similar items (excluding private-label brands) at their local Whole Foods Markets, and nearby competitors. Here are some of the results:

ORGANIC MILK (GALLON)

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $5.99

Safeway - San Francisco -- $7.19

Whole Foods - New York -- $5.69

Food Emporium - New York -- $3.89

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $5.69

Dominick's - Chicago -- N/A

TOILET PAPER (FOUR-PACK)

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $1.79

Safeway - San Francisco -- $1.59

Whole Foods - New York -- $3.99

Food Emporium - New York -- $1.99

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $3.99

Dominick's - Chicago -- $3.49

COLA (SIX-PACK)

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $3.29

Safeway - San Francisco -- $1.89

Whole Foods - New York -- $2.99

Food Emporium - New York -- $2.99

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $4.79

Dominick's - Chicago -- $2.99

MACARONI & CHEESE (BOX)

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $1.59

Safeway - San Francisco -- $2.19

Whole Foods - New York -- $1.79

Food Emporium - New York -- $1.39

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $1.79

Dominick's - Chicago -- $1.09

DISH DETERGENT (25 OUNCES)

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $1.59

Safeway - San Francisco -- $2.19

Whole Foods - New York -- $2.99

Food Emporium - New York -- $2.89

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $3.39

Dominick's - Chicago -- $3.19

LOAF OF BREAD

Whole Foods - San Francisco -- $2.99

Safeway - San Francisco -- $3.99

Whole Foods - New York -- $2.99

Food Emporium - New York -- $2.99

Whole Foods - Chicago -- $2.79

Dominick's - Chicago -- $3.39

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