Whole Foods Market will open a new store in Carrollwood in late 2012. The natural and organic grocery store will occupy 36,000 square feet at the intersection of Dale Mabry Highway and Northdale Boulevard, marking the store’s 17th location in Florida and its second in Tampa.
Whole Foods spokesperson Russ Benblatt said the grocery store chain has been looking for a new Tampa location, and demand in the Carrollwood area was high.
“The customers at our current store in Tampa have asked for it,” he said. “There's a lot of science that goes into figuring out where we’re going to put another store, but mostly we listen to our customers.”
Rachel Silver, a student at the University of South Florida, said the current Whole Foods in Tampa is a little far for her, so she shops at The Fresh Market and Publix’s organic section. She said she’s excited about the new Whole Foods location.
“They have a really good selection,” said Rachel, 18. “I'm a vegetarian so they have a lot of stuff that I can eat.”
Russ said plans for the store’s design, vendors and exact opening date are still in the works, but Whole Foods will announce more details as they are finalized.
“We tailor the stores to the community that we’re in, and that means it takes a little bit longer to open them sometimes,” Benblatt said. “As a company we’ve never opened the same store twice, and we’re very proud of that.”
Erin Newsome, a Carrollwood mom of three, said she’s looking forward to the addition of a Whole Foods to the community.
“Eating healthy is important, and eating organic food is even more important, so it'll be nice to have an affordable store that caters to those of who care about what we eat,” she said.
Additional details including location on Dale Mabry Highway, cost to build store or what is currently located where Whole Foods Market plans to open was unavailable at press time on Friday.