In supermarket circles, 2017 may be remembered as the year Amazon entered the fray. As the Seattle giant tinkers around the edges in reshaping Whole Foods, and we wait for the inevitable “something big” to come of it, it’s a good time to take stock of the specialty space as we close out the year.

Of the concepts we’re closely monitoring, Sprouts and Fresh Thyme have made the most noise on the real estate front. The former recently confirmed that it’s on track to open 32 units in 2017. Those new stores helped Sprouts boost revenue through the first half of the year by 15%, but it’s not just about new builds. Existing same store sales were also up a respectable 1.5% for the period. For its part, the Mid-West’s Fresh Thyme will end the year with 66 total stores after opening what looks to be its final new store of the year in November. That’s a net gain of 18 units in 2017 and follows the 20 new stores added in 2016. More of the same can be expected in 2018, as we’ve already seen confirmed reports of 9 stores to open the list of builds next year.

Next up is Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage. The Denver-based company followed up a net gain of 20 stores in 2016 by adding 14 more before it closed out Fiscal 2017 (FYE 9-30-17). Like Fresh Thyme, net sales are up (to the tune of +8.8% through three quarters), but unlike its Meijer-backed counterpart, same store sales have been largely flat.