With Whole Foods stores sprouting up like so many stalks of bamboo, you might wonder if the company is really sustainable. Well, it's getting there.

According to the company's new packaging guidelines, which went into effect on September 1, many of its store-brand vitamins and supplements (look for the leaf symbol) will come in bottles made entirely from post-consumer recycled plastic. Even though the recycling process can be energy-intensive, using recycled plastic will reduce the company's use of virgin petrochemicals and divert plastic waste from the landfill.

By late 2010, if things go according to plan, all supplements will come in 100 percent PCR PET. It's a step in the right direction. Now if only the prices were a little more sustainable.

Photo (cc) by Flickr user david_shankbone