The Good Life: The Mix: Trendspotting: Whole Foods Totes

Balenciaga Motorcycle Bags for $2,000 and Fendi Spy Bags for $1,800 may be all the rage in L.A. and NYC, but around here, $1 Whole Foods totes emblazoned with kitschy images of fresh food seem to be popping up all over town on the shoulders of stylish Philadelphians. Is it just a fleeting craze? A passing phase? To find out, we called the woman behind the bags, Whole Foods regional director of marketing Sarah Kenney. Turns out we were actually on to something (imagine!): Since the bags were introduced in the region last fall, about half a million of them have been sold or given away. Even more exciting, Whole Foods plans to continue to introduce new bags as the year goes on — so those early adopters who snatched the first potato bags last spring and then moved on to coffee, apple, lemon, flour and pickle bags still have clementines (above) to look forward to this month, and more ahead. “For so long, American consumers have been conditioned to think that getting bags is good customer service,” Kenney says. “Our challenge is to change shoppers’ approaches to consumption in a way that will help reduce waste, but is also stylish and fun.” So will the bags become a fixture at Whole Foods? “For now,” Kenney says. “Of course, we don’t want the idea to grow — no pun intended — stale.”