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McLEAN, Va. (AP) – Whole Foods supermarkets says it has fired nine store managers in the mid-Atlantic region for manipulating a bonus program to their benefit.

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Brooke Buchanan, a spokeswoman for Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods Market Inc., said they were dismissed in recent weeks after a company-wide investigation.

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The store found that nine managers at stores in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia engaged in a policy infraction that allowed the managers to benefit from a profit-sharing program at the expense of store employees.

Buchanan said Whole Foods is still investigating exactly how much money is involved and plans to ensure that employees at the affected stores are compensated properly. The amounts involved, though, will not be material to the company’s quarterly earnings.

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