Update to Our Partnership with Whole Foods Market

The Instacart Checkout
3 min readDec 13, 2018


To Our Shopper Community:

Six years ago, Instacart began offering a completely new way to order groceries online. The hallmark of our service was unique among grocery delivery offerings — combining technology with the human touch. Our customers responded to and have come to rely on you — our dedicated community of 70,000 shoppers who serve as household heroes for busy families and professionals throughout North America.

As Instacart shoppers, you’re the face of our company, enabling us to reach across the grocery aisles of more than 15,000 stores and connect customers to hundreds of local retailers they love. Today, we have the largest retail marketplace in the online grocery space. We’re proud of the partnerships we’ve built with the national, regional and local retailers that have been a part of families’ lives for generations. That’s why it’s important to share with you a retail partnership update that will impact a valuable group of our shoppers.

Whole Foods Market has been a partner of ours since 2014, but our relationship is now beginning to wind down.

The first phase of this transition starts today, which means that we have to start scaling back our in-store shopper operations within Whole Foods locations. Today, we have 1,415 in-store shoppers across 76 Whole Foods locations. Out of this community of in-store shoppers at Whole Foods, 243 will be impacted beginning February 10, 2019. In the months that follow, we expect to ramp down all remaining Whole Foods in-store shopping operations in preparation for Whole Foods to fully exit our marketplace in the coming months.

As you know, while we do employ some in-store shoppers dedicated to a specific retailer like Whole Foods, the vast majority of our shoppers work across multiple retail partners rather than a single grocer. For those shoppers who support several grocers, this transition will not impact you. For Whole Foods specifically, our multi-store shoppers will still be able to pick, pack and deliver from Whole Foods locations nationwide until they exit our marketplace.

For our in-store Whole Foods shoppers who are personally impacted by this news, we’re deeply committed to being transparent about what this means for you and plan to share any updates with you as they become available. I want you to know that we plan to support you through this transition in several ways.

First, we expect to be able to place more than 75% of all our impacted in-store Whole Foods shoppers in new in-store shopper jobs at another retailer in their area. For our remaining impacted shoppers, we are committed to doing everything we can to support you. We want to find the best possible option for you, and we’re available to discuss other potential roles either within or outside of Instacart. For all in-store Whole Foods shoppers we do place in a new role with Instacart, we’ll be offering a transfer bonus to support your overall transition.

Second, we’re committed to taking care of all impacted in-store Whole Foods shoppers who choose not to, or cannot, be placed in a new role. For those shoppers, we’ll be providing a minimum of 3-months separation package based on your maximum monthly pay in 2018, as well as additional tenure-based compensation. We’ve already shared this news directly with all impacted in-store Whole Foods shoppers but if anyone has any questions on today’s news, please reach out to your manager for more information.

Finally, I want to thank you all for your continued dedication to providing a great service for our customers. We’re incredibly proud of the work you do. Whether you’re a shift lead, site manager, full-service shopper or in-store shopper, the role you play at Instacart is the reason we’ve become indispensable to millions of families across North America.


Apoorva Mehta

Founder and CEO