Who Knew Whole Foods Was English-Only? Chain Suspends Workers for Speaking Spanish

Jun 6, 2013
3:42 PM

UPDATE: Whole Foods has responded.

Et tú, Whole Foods?

According to an Associated Press story published by NBC Latino, two Whole Foods employees said that they were suspended from their jobs “after complaining about being told they couldn’t speak Spanish to each other while on the job.”


The story said that these two employees worked in an Albuquerque, New Mexico store and that they got a one-day suspension after they were told that “Spanish was not allowed during work hours.”

The story also said that Whole Foods has an English-only policy in place:

Ben Friedland, Whole Foods Market Rocky Mountain Region Executive Marketing Coordinator, says the Austin, Texas-based company believes in “having a uniform form of communication” for a safe working environment.

Friedland says company policy states that all English speaking workers must speak English to customers and other employees while on the clock.

So, if Spanish is not allowed at the stores, how does Whole Foods explain these features from their own web site?

Salud! Cooking School


Feisty Fiesta Dishes for Cinco de Mayo: We’re sorry, but this is Spanish! Suspended!

Or a Latin Party from Putumayo? Suspend this party now! They are singing in Spanish!

Here’s what we say to you, Whole Foods.

For those who only speak English, that means SUCK IT.