Critique of Amazon Buyout of Whole Foods

So far, much of the analysis of the Amazon buyout of WFM comes across as superficial fodder from tech-enamored pundits and absent a food- or farm-centric perspective.
Therefore, this thoughtful piece from food-community author Dr. Wayne Roberts and posted in ‘Medium’ is a breath of fresh air and definitely worth a read. Jim

“The Bezosification of food will have a long tail, and it will mostly be bad for all important things food-related.

“Not just bad for farmers, workers and the same old/same old bricks and mortar crowd we’re used to seeing left to eat the disruption dust. This will be bad for health, the environment and cities — and even more important, for the fundamentals of food as a major definer of the human experience.

“So let’s look at Bezosification not as a retail disruption story, but as a food story — one which accelerates the decline of people-centered food systems, not just traditional bricks and mortar retailers…

“Farmers, together with fishers, are the people who feed us. Farmers in countries that will be most impacted by Bezosification are well into their 50s, because neither their kids nor any other grouping see a way of making a viable career or life out of working the land. This is the problem staring anyone concerned with overall food security in the face…

“A deal that is bad for farmers and farming deserves to be seen as a deal that starts off by violating the public interest and human needs. Perhaps worth a pause for reflection before going headlong down a path of disruption?…

“The Amazon takeover of Whole Foods is a blip in that overall pattern of monopolization — with all due recognition of Amazon’s power, it is only a blip in the overall picture quickly summarized in this report. But an important blp, because it ramps up the speed by which tools will be adopted to intensify the impacts of monopolization — particularly the impact of squeezing farmers one more time to lower their prices below their costs of production and to devote their production to outsized wholesalers…

“Anything that increases the power of Amazon reduces the power of working people to shape their own, or the world’s, future…

“Nothing like insisting that businesses pay the real costs of the way they do business to throw a real disruptive curve to those who just want to externalize their true costs.”

https://medium.com/@wayneroberts/why-amazon-should-not-be-allowed-to-take-over-the-whole-food-industry-2524e792671