What's Rotten at Whole Foods

John Mackey's anonymous online critiques and self-congratulations have damaged the brand identity on which the high-end grocer depends

There's something rotting at Whole Foods Market (WFMI) and it isn't in the produce department. It's in the company's management team: John Mackey, the chief executive who spent years anonymously posting on the Web about his company and its rivals, appears to share a cynical arrogance with other corporate self-promoters who believe they don't have to personally uphold the values they publicly proclaim. The Whole Foods mission statement boasts: "We lead by example." But Mackey's unapologetic example is hardly the model for the Whole Foods brand.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.