Whole Foods coming to Dayton area

Whole Foods will open its first store in the Dayton area, company officials announced Monday.

The Austin, Texas-based grocery chain has signed a lease for a new store location at the intersection of McEwen Road and Miamisburg-Centerville Road (Ohio 725) in Washington Twp., officials said.

The approximately 45,000-square-foot store will be the company’s eighth location in Ohio and the first in the Dayton area. An opening date has not been set, officials said.

The Dayton Daily News last month reported that the Cincinnati-based El Rancho Grande restaurants chain will sell its location at 1020 Miamisburg-Centerville Road in Washington Twp. to make way for a new shopping center with a Whole Foods Market.

Founded in 1980, Whole Foods Market is the nation’s top retailer of natural and organic foods. The company currently operates 355 stores in 40 U.S. states, plus the U.K. and Canada.

Whole Foods’ new location will offer area residents high-quality natural and organic groceries, said Scott Allshouse, the company’s Mid-Atlantic regional president.

“This store marks our eighth location in Ohio — a state that we’ve loved being a part of — and we look forward to it continuing with our first Dayton location,” Allshouse said in a statement.

“Whole Foods Market and our team members are very active in their communities,” he said. “Whether it’s through offering local products by local vendors or organizing ‘5 percent days,’ where 5 percent of proceeds on a dedicated day go to a nearby nonprofit, our work in the Dayton area will be no different.”

Allshouse said Whole Foods stores stores combine the concepts of a “plentiful farmer’s market, knowledgeable butcher and fishmonger and made-from-scratch bakery all in one place.”

Company officials said they will provide updates as store plans develop. “For now, we are simply excited to create a store that is unique to the needs of the Dayton community,” Allshouse said.

Whole Foods Market had sales of about $12 billion in fiscal year 2012. It currently employs about 76,000 people.

For fiscal year 2014, Whole Foods Market expects sales growth of 12 percent to 14 percent, according to company materials.

In a July conference call with analysts, the publicly traded grocery chain outlined its plans to expand to 1,000 stores nationally. Whole Foods plans to open an estimated 32 stores during fiscal year 2013, and from 33 to 38 stores in fiscal year 2014, according to company materials. Those stores include a second location in Columbus.

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