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Whole Foods Market(R) Announces Eco-Conscious Youth Hosts for 'Whole Earth Generation(TM)' Show
Date:4/1/2008

Six Chosen from Hundreds of Hopefuls Participating in National Casting Call

For Inspired Green Youth

AUSTIN, Texas, April 1 /PRNewswire/ -- In celebration of Earth Month, Whole Foods Market, the world's leading natural and organic foods supermarket, today announced that six fresh-faced, eco-conscious personalities were chosen from hundreds of entries to host its new video podcast series "Whole Earth Generation," which is dedicated to raising environmental awareness among today's youth.

A national casting call of 8 to 17-year-olds was held in March to discover green-minded hosts for the series. Submissions were accepted on YouTube and in person at Whole Foods Market stores in New York, Chicago and Austin during a special one-day event. Ultimately, six winners -- three from the YouTube entries and three from the in-store auditions -- were selected among hundreds of entries from around the country. In addition to landing the role as online talent, each new Whole Earth Generation host is awarded select prizes from some of the program's participating green sponsors.

"It is so exciting to see the motivation and passion among kids today about environmental issues. Through this program, we are observing that children are bringing innovative ideas to their teachers and parents while acting within their communities to spread the word about positive environmental change," said Heather Kennedy, director of marketing for Whole Foods Market. "The young winners are green to their new roles as eco-hosts, yet each bring a real knowledge of "green" well beyond their tween/teen years."

The online search led to casting:

-- Erin Schrode, 16, of San Francisco, with a video glimpse of her

morning routine as a "green girl";

-- Burt Chaikin, 14, of Highland Park, Ill., where he acts as the "host"

of a recycling themed game show; and

-- Lil' Pepe, only 9, of Miami who is a super young talent with an

inspiring rap calling us to protect the earth.

The in-store casting calls boasted three talents that now get a shot at taking their local eco-conscious fame to a global level.
-- India Gray-Farris, 7, of New York -- while just shy of the age cut

off -- had to be included when she unanimously charmed the judges

with a vow to turn junkyards in Manhattan into green gardens;

-- Michael Wray, 16, of Dallas, walked away a winner from Whole Foods

Market's hometown Austin audition as a natural eco-enthusiast who was

extremely motivated by the eco-documentary "Inconvenient Truth"; and

-- Angela Jordan, 10, of Wheeling, Ill., wowed the judges in Chicago

with her enthusiasm and homemade re-useable shopping bags she crafted

as an alternative to plastic.

The original Whole Earth Generation online series will continue to air with original content on Tuesdays through April 29, 2008 on http://www.youtube.com/WholeFoodsMarket. Upcoming episodes will feature informed content on topics such as:
-- green teens building a sustainable house from recycled materials;

-- behind-the-scenes preparation for a teen eco-fashion show featuring

all-natural hair products and cosmetics and environmentally friendly

fashion;

-- a tour of "Green Chicago" from sustainable buildings to green-roofed

skyscrapers;

-- and an insider view to greening local youth sports leagues.

Additionally to celebrate Earth Month, Whole Foods Market announces it is on track with its pledge to end the use of disposable plastic grocery bags at the checkout counters by Earth Day, April 22, 2008 at its more than 270 stores.

Stores across the U.S. will be hosting an assortment of environmental awareness events to celebrate as well ranging from Earth Day fairs, to bag refund donations for local charities, to trade-outs for greener products. Some examples include:
-- The Robson Vancouver, Canada store is highlighting local nonprofits

and vendors such as an urban composting program, a conservation

program to help customers make environmentally friendly seafood

choices, and a car sharing service, all to the tune of a local

experimental string rock band.

-- The San Antonio, Texas store is encouraging shoppers to bring in an

incandescent light bulb to exchange for a free Whole Foods Market 365

Everyday Value(TM) CFL light bulb, which uses less power to supply

the same amount of light.

-- The North Carolina stores are asking shoppers to "donate their dime"

from reusable bag refunds to a foundation focused on sustainable

energy usage and local food consumption.

-- The Midwest stores allow shoppers to bring in any new or used

household cleaner and exchange it for a new full-sized greener

cleaner made with natural enzymes by Naturally Clean Solutions.

-- In Santa Clarita, California, the Valencia location is hosting a

Recycled Art Gallery where school-area children and the local Boys

and Girls Club will collect recycled materials around their homes and

schools to create mobiles and sculptures for an art display. The

adults at that store can learn how to crochet plastic grocery bags

into stylish purses.

For details on events at your local Whole Foods Market store, please visit http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores.

About Whole Foods Market(R)

Founded in 1980 in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market (http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com) is the world's leading natural and organic foods supermarket and America's first national certified organic grocer. In fiscal year 2007, the company had sales of $6.6 billion and currently has more than 270 stores in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The Whole Foods Market motto, "Whole Foods, Whole People, Whole Planet"(TM) captures the company's mission to find success in customer satisfaction and wellness, employee excellence and happiness, enhanced shareholder value, community support and environmental improvement. Whole Foods Market, Fresh & Wild(TM), and Harry's Farmers Market(R) are trademarks owned by Whole Foods Market IP, LP. Wild Oats(R) and Capers Community Market(TM) are trademarks owned by Wild Marks, Inc. Whole Foods Market employs more than 53,000 Team Members and has been ranked for 11 consecutive years as one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" in America by FORTUNE magazine.

Whole Foods Market is continuing to strengthen its commitment to the environment. Most stores participate in a composting program where food waste and compostable paper goods are regenerated into compost. Each store has a Green Mission Team, an internal task force composed of Team Members who inform and improve green actions for their store. The downtown Austin store as well as the Sarasota store are recognized for their sustainable green building practices and are LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified. Additionally, many stores serve as a collection point for shoppers to recycle their plastic bags. Whole Foods Market also has won the prestigious EPA Green Power award consecutively for the past four years for its renewable energy credit purchases.

Contact: Mara Engel/Cheryl Roth

OrganicWorks Marketing

212.253.0474

Mara@organicworksmarketing.com


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SOURCE Whole Foods Market
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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