Amazon on Tuesday introduced grocery pickup through Prime Now at two Whole Foods stores.
The grocer’s Sacramento and Virginia Beach locations will be the first Whole Foods to get the new pickup service. The stores will fill online orders in as little as 30 minutes and deliver right to customers cars. More stores will get the service throughout this year.
The new program, which is available through the Prime Now app, is part of Amazon’s work to integrate more of its features into Whole Foods. Amazon purchased Whole Foods last year for $13.2 billion. Amazon has already rolled out Prime Now deliveries for Whole Foods stores in roughly two dozen cities in the US and offers a 10 percent discount for Whole Foods sales items in all its US stores. Like the new pickup program, those perks are only available to Prime customers.
Amazon’s work to offer more grocery pickup comes as Walmart, the biggest grocer in the US, expands its curbside grocery pickup program and builds out its online grocery delivery business, challenging Amazon’s own online grocery service, AmazonFresh.
Whole Foods already offers buy online, pickup in-store and delivery options at several stores through its personal shopper program and Instacart. Customers can also order online and pick up catered food at Whole Foods locations.
The new service fills orders faster in most cases, can be cheaper than personal shoppers and provides a much broader selection than the catering menu.
Customers can get orders filled in an hour at no additional charge, as long as those orders are at least $35. If you are under that minimum, you’ll be charged $1.99. Orders can also be filled in 30 minutes for $4.99, with no order minimum required.
The Prime Now pickup program is separate from AmazonFresh Pickup, which is found at two locations in Seattle where Amazon operates for grocery pickup.