Whole Foods' chief litigator: High price investigation all about blackmail

Whole Foods Chief Litigation Counsel John Hempfling addresses accusations that the store is overcharging customers.

Whole Foods on Overcharging Probe: This Is Coercion

By Features FOXBusiness

Supermarket chain Whole Foods is under fire after an investigation by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) found some of the company’s stores were overcharging customers. During an interview on FOX Business Network’s Cavuto: Coast to Coast, Whole Foods Chief Litigation Counsel John Hempfling said he disagrees with the agency's charges.

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“There’s no question in my mind that what the DCA is trying to do is to coerce us into paying way more money on damages claims that they don’t have evidence to support,” said Hempfling. “We’re willing to sit down and talk with the DCA, and in fact we have. We’ve cooperated with them every step of the way.”

Despite the company’s efforts to be “honest and transparent to its customers,” Hempfling said human errors will happen and the company has instituted measures to catch mistakes.

“We have third-party audits in place to try to make sure that we’re doing the right thing,” Hempfling said. “Our team members are constantly auditing the stores to make sure that we’re pricing correctly, and frankly, what we’ve found is that many times when we make mistakes on the pricings, it’s actually in favor of the customer rather than in favor of Whole Foods Market.”

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