Contrasting United Natural Foods (UNFI) and The Competition

United Natural Foods (NASDAQ: UNFI) is one of 23 publicly-traded companies in the “Food Retail & Distribution” industry, but how does it weigh in compared to its competitors? We will compare United Natural Foods to related businesses based on the strength of its institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, risk, profitability, dividends and analyst recommendations.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares United Natural Foods and its competitors top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue EBITDA Price/Earnings Ratio
United Natural Foods $9.27 billion $318.94 million 15.66
United Natural Foods Competitors $21.46 billion $1.01 billion 39.28

United Natural Foods’ competitors have higher revenue and earnings than United Natural Foods. United Natural Foods is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than its competitors, indicating that it is currently more affordable than other companies in its industry.

Risk and Volatility

United Natural Foods has a beta of 1.43, suggesting that its share price is 43% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, United Natural Foods’ competitors have a beta of 0.93, suggesting that their average share price is 7% less volatile than the S&P 500.


This table compares United Natural Foods and its competitors’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
United Natural Foods 1.40% 8.10% 4.50%
United Natural Foods Competitors 0.80% 32.79% 4.17%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for United Natural Foods and its competitors, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
United Natural Foods 4 9 5 0 2.06
United Natural Foods Competitors 645 1346 1393 23 2.23

United Natural Foods presently has a consensus price target of $42.25, suggesting a potential upside of 5.41%. As a group, “Food Retail & Distribution” companies have a potential upside of 5.64%. Given United Natural Foods’ competitors stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe United Natural Foods has less favorable growth aspects than its competitors.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

56.2% of shares of all “Food Retail & Distribution” companies are owned by institutional investors. 1.3% of United Natural Foods shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 17.1% of shares of all “Food Retail & Distribution” companies are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.


United Natural Foods competitors beat United Natural Foods on 10 of the 13 factors compared.

About United Natural Foods

United Natural Foods, Inc. is a distributor and retailer of natural, organic and specialty products. The Company’s segments include Wholesale and Other. The Wholesale segment is engaged in the national distribution of natural, organic and specialty foods, produce and related products in the United States and Canada. The Other segment includes a retail division, which engages in the sale of natural foods and related products to the general public through retail storefronts on the east coast of the United States; a manufacturing division, which engages in importing, roasting and packaging of nuts, seeds, dried fruit and snack items, and its branded product lines. Its operations consist of three operating divisions: Wholesale Division, Retail Division, and Manufacturing and Branded Products divisions. As of July 30, 2016, the Company had offered 100,000 natural, organic and specialty foods, and non-food products, consisting of national, regional and private-label brands.

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