Yes, there IS a grocery chain that offers low prices, hormone-free dairy, and pays their employees fairly. This may seem like an impossible feat, but Aldi makes it happen.
Lucky for me, I ventured into their Yukon, OK Pre-Grand Opening and met Christopher Wille, Director of Operations, who accommodated an impromptu interview. This speaks volumes to me because I feel that we were having an open and honest conversation and not a canned promotional ‘interview speech’.
Maybe Adli didn’t start out as a relatively progressive grocery chain, but they’ve quickly become one by embracing and utilizing progressive ideologies such as fair compensation for workers, offering hormone-free dairy products, pesticide-free produce, streamlining stores to be energy efficient, promoting ‘green’ shopping, plus more and offering all of this at more than competitive prices.
Currently, there are 17 Aldi Stores in Oklahoma with 4 more planned in the next year, offering needed jobs to the Oklahoma economy. And not just any jobs. The starting pay at Aldi is $11.50 per hour with FULL benefits packages for employees working at least 20 hours a week. This is the SAME benefits package that is received by the Director of Operations. It includes medical, dental, vision, vacation days, 401k, and much more.
How do they do it? Aldi Stores uses a variety of methods to keep costs low for the consumer. One is requiring a quarter to be deposited for a shopping cart which is returned when you return the cart. This effectively prevents loss of shopping carts which keep the cost from being passed onto the consumer. Another method is store hours. Aldi Stores are only open until 9pm to limit energy consumption/operating costs during non-peak hours. The biggest, and in my humble opinion, the greatest method they use to save consumers money is that they sell their products at a fair profit for the company. No overpriced gimmicky garbage at Aldi. No fat-cat corporate moguls, just fair pricing. Fair to the company, fair to the consumer.
So how do the Aldi brands quality of food rate in comparison to others? I served a cheese tray at a high-end dinner party last Christmas. Everyone raved over the cheese. While I admit there are a few products I don’t prefer to buy at Aldi, I will say that I purchase about 85% of my groceries there. It is a matter of simple preference. They don’t sell my brand of coffee, but my husband loves their coffee. Aldi is pretty confident of their products, thus they are currently handing out free grocery tote bags with a sampling of products that you can try for yourself today at the new Yukon location on 10th & Garth Brooks Blvd. *UPDATE: The free shopping bags with samples is continued for Wednesday!
The produce department is my favorite area with fresh fruits and vegetables at very low prices. Aldi says “NO” to GMO’s so I know I’m getting a quality product.
Will I continue to shop at Aldi? With a $2.85 price tag for hormone-free milk and $1.09 for hormone-free large eggs, you betcha.