Sentence: Whole foods means food that's in its original form, straight from nature, typically whole fruits, veggies, whole grains, et cetera.

I want to know why "means" not "mean" is used here.

I assume "food" is a both uncountable and countable noun. The plural form of "food" is "foods". Plural subjects must have a plural verb. So when "foods" is subject, the verb must be plural, which is in accordance with the subject.

1 Answer 1


This isn't very well written, but you should understand it to mean

The expression "Whole foods" means food that is in it's original form...

The speaker is mentioning the term "Whole foods" rather than using it. There is one expression, and so the the singular form of the verb has been used.

So you would say

Whole foods are being sold at the supermarket.

But you might say

'Whole foods' is an expression that many people misunderstand.

When we mention a phrase we usually put it in quotes. The author hasn't done this, which is why there seems to be a mistake.

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