Albertsons hopes to buy Austin-based Whole Foods

The supermarket giant Albertsons may make a bid to buy Whole Foods Market, which is based in Austin.

Rumors about the takeover started circulating Monday because of a Financial Times report. However, both companies declined to comment.

There were also reports last month that the same investment firm that owns Albertsons, Tom Thumb and Safeway was interested in another healthy food chain – Sprouts Farmers Market.

There are more than 450 Whole Foods stores in the United States, Canada and Great Britain.