Get Ready For Cheap Groceries: 45 New Aldi Stores Coming To SoCal
Aldi, a really cheap German grocery chain, will be expanding to California for the first time. They'll be starting off with 45 stores in SoCal, with the first one expected to open in March 2016.
The stores are owned by the same family that owns Trader Joe's, and there are already about 1,400 Aldi markets across 32 states, according to the L.A. Times.
Their business model is different from your average grocery chain, and because of that, they're able to keep their prices much lower than big-box supermarkets. TIME reports that you'll rarely see a cereal box cost more than $2 at Aldi, and even a gallon of milk is $1 cheaper than your traditional supermarkets. Like Trader Joe's, Aldi mostly carries private-label brands, and just a limited selection of items. For example, you'll only see one or two types of jars of peanut butter or canned vegetables at Aldi. They do this so they can buy in bulk, save money, and pass on those discounts to customers.
Their other cost-saving methods have customers do the work that their employees would normally do. Aldi customers have to pack their own groceries. If you want a shopping cart, you have to insert a quarter into a slot to get a cart, but then you get your coin back when you return it.
On the flip side, it seems like both customers and employees reap in the benefits of their cost-cutting strategies. The starting wage Aldi is offering for its SoCal employees is $13 per hour.
"Aldi has always done best with markets with the highest cost of living," Burt Flickinger III, managing director of consulting firm Strategic Resource Group, told the Times. "California has the highest cost of living in the continental United States."