Amazon is planning to cut jobs at Whole Foods when it takes over the company, according to a Bloomberg report published on Sunday that cites a source with knowledge of the matter.
The Seattle-headquartered ecommerce giant is considering replacing Whole Foods cashiers with technology, according to the report.
The exact number of roles on the line is not specified but it could run into the thousands given Whole Foods employs around 90,000 people in total, with many of those working on the shop floor.
Amazon also intends to reduce the price of Whole Foods stock as part of a wider effort to make its grocery offering more appealing to people on low and middle incomes, the report suggests.
Bloomberg isn’t the only publication examining the potentially devastating consequences for Whole Foods staff. A separate opinion piece from Forbes contributor Panos Mourdoukoutas on Sunday carried the headline: “Amazon-Whole Foods Deal Is Bad News For Store Cashiers And The Fight For $US15 Minimum Wage.“
It’s no secret that Amazon is interested in developing supermarkets that do away with people and replace them with sensors, scanners, and chips. They’re called Amazon Go stores.
Amazon Go stores feature technology that allows shoppers to simply walk in, grab what they want, and leave. Amazon opened its first Amazon Go test store in Seattle earlier this year. The cashierless store uses a range of sensors and a smartphone app to know what customers have purchased.
Bloomberg’s source reportedly said that Amazon is looking at introducing the same technology in its Amazon Go stores to Whole Foods stores.
Amazon did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.