Whole Foods Market began offering online ordering and curbside pickup in Sacramento and Virginia Beach, Va. on Wednesday morning, the first two cities in a program expected to grow through the year.
Here’s how it works: Amazon Prime members place their orders on the company’s website or through the Prime Now app. If the order is more than $35, the groceries will be ready for free pickup within an hour; if it’s $35 or less, they’ll be ready in 30 minutes but will cost $4.99, according to a company news release.
Customers then pull into reserved spots at their chosen Whole Foods and wait for employees to dash outside with the groceries. If the buyer relays their impending arrival through the Prime Now app, employees will meet them as they pull into the lot — groceries in hand. Pickup and delivery are available daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
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“Pickup from Whole Foods Market is a perfect option for customers who want to grab healthy and organic groceries at their convenience, all without leaving their car,” Prime Now vice president Stephenie Landry said in the release. “A customer can order at 5 p.m., pick up at 5:30 p.m., and we’ll have their groceries loaded into their car just minutes after arrival.”
Whole Foods began offering free two-hour home delivery on orders of more than $35 to Prime members in greater Sacramento in April. Orders can also be made through Alexa, Amazon’s virtual assistant.
Amazon bought Whole Foods for $13.4 billion last year in an attempt to one-up Walmart, the largest retailer in the U.S. Walmart began offering curbside pickup at three Sacramento-area stores in 2016, and Raley’s adopted the service last November.