Forgive me for repeating what is on Lew’s website but I feel the need to highlight one of Lew’s best interviews, with John Mackey the founder of the amazing Whole Foods markets. This hits close to home. My wife, daughters, and I had lovely pizza slices at Whole Foods in Arlington, VA this past week as our son was in his organ lesson — poor boy got leftovers. The success of John Mackey and his team is that he understands what people want and what they are willing to pay for. We had delicious pizza at his Clarendon outlet overlooking the shoppers in what doubles in the afternoon as a second floor food and local beer bar. It was packed of course because everyone loves Whole Foods. It is a miracle store that reminds me of the elite markets in old town square in Prague or the fancy shops on Vaci Utca in Budapest. Of course those are only for the tourists and the wealthy, and mere eye candy and forlorn wishes for the locals in such places. At the Whole Foods outlets all people can afford to purchase wholesome and unadulterated foods.
John Mackey is a hero to me because he is the epitome of the left/right convergence that is suspicious of the corporate “food” paradigm but does not despise the idea of making profits and the motivation of the free market. In short, he embodies the idea that one can appeal to the leftish and the neo-traditionalist localist (which has conservative tendencies as well) movements at the same time. Thank you Lew for your wonderful interview and thank you to John Mackey. May you both prosper!