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St. Petersburg, Florida -- Rumors are swirling in Bay area business circles that Lakeland-based Publix is looking to buy Whole Foods which is based in Austiin, Texas.

Publix has been around since 1930 with more than 1,000 stores in 6 states. That makes it the largest employee owned grocery store in the country.

Whole Foods got its start in 1980 and has 374 stores, many which came from a merger with Wild Oats seven years ago.

Interview with Margie Manning a writer for Tampa Bay Business Journal about about Publix rumors.

Both are Fortune 500 companies.

Tampa Bay Business Journal writer Margie Manning tells 10 News rumors like this are common with businesses, but oftentimes, never come to fruition. As for what this could do for Publix's stock, Manning says with Whole Foods, its stock has gone up almost 5 percent on the heels of the recent speculation.

What do you think about the possibility of Publix buying Whole Foods? Comment below.

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