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Discount Grocer Aldi Opens Its Palm Coast Store Thursday on State Road 100

| July 11, 2017

Aldi's arrival in Palm Coast has long been anticipated. (Aldi)

Aldi’s arrival in Palm Coast has long been anticipated. (Aldi)

Publix had better beware: The Germans are coming.

Aldi, the fast-growing German discount grocery chain, opens its doors in Palm Coast at 8:30 Thursday morning in the new shopping center on State Road 100, across from the Target shopping center. It’s a long-anticipated opening that has grocery bargain-hunters giddy, and Aldi bullish: the opening is part of a wave of new Aldi stores that’s only growing with time. Just last month, the chain, third-largest among grocers in the United States behind Walmart and Kroger but largest in the world, announced a $3.4 billion expansion with 900 more stores opening across the country, on top of the 1,600 it already runs in 35 states. It wants to do so by 2022, so another Aldi store in the area is possible. It has more than 8,000 stores worldwide.

After Thursday’s 8:25 ribbon-cutting, customers will be invited to tour the store, sample products and enter a local sweepstakes for a chance to win a year’s supply of Aldi produce.

The company is increasingly devouring a share of a hyper-competitive market where shopping for produce can sometimes trigger double-takes, given the prices.

The company lowers prices by adopting a few tricks: customers have to drop a quarter as a deposit to get a cart. They get their quarter back when they return the cart. Customers pack their own groceries (if you can fill your own gas tank, cut your own meat and drive your own car, you can pack your own groceries). You’ll get cashiers. But you won’t see them weighing produce before pricing it. It all gets to the cash register pre-packaged, ready to scan.

St. Émilion, Palm Coast vintage. (Aldi)

St. Émilion, Palm Coast vintage. (Aldi)

And nine out of 10 products are Aldi’s own, which means there is no middleman adding to the cost. That means there are fewer choices (2,000 food items instead of 45,000, generally speaking), but if you’re familiar with Costco, it’s not much different: 73 different kinds of mustard may have some benefits, but Aldi is betting that most consumers will take the lower prices in exchange for diminished choices.

Inside the store, you’ll notice few frills. No fancy shelving, no endless rearranging of shelves, and many fewer aisles than you’re used to at Publix or even Winn Dixie. Items are often sold in their own boxes. And the lighting is a little less like the set of a sitcom, with lights shining from every angle, and more energy-conscious. There are produce, dairy and bakery sections, natural lighting and environmentally-friendly building materials. Because the store’s organization is low-frills, it uses many fewer employees, thus cutting down on the biggest cost and, presumably, passing the savings to customers. (The company is privately held.)

“We’re thrilled to join the Palm Coast community and offer customers the benefits of the Aldi shopping experience,” Matt Thon, the Haines City division vice president for the company’s U.S. operation, was quoted as saying in a release the company issued earlier today. “Our high-quality products and everyday low prices make for a combination our competitors just can’t match.”

According to its release, Aldi has added a number of new product lines including a growing organic selection, USDA Choice meats, the liveGfree gluten-free product line, the SimplyNature line of products free from over 125 artificial ingredients and preservatives and the Never Any! line of meats free from antibiotics, added hormones and animal by-products. The store carries a full line of baby products, Little Journey, which offers customers diapers, wipes, training pants, formula, organic food and snacks.

Aldi products are free of added MSG, certified synthetic colors and partially hydrogenated oils. The company, its release states, ensures its exclusive brands meet or exceed the national brands on taste and quality by conducting rigorous testing on all products. (If a customer doesn’t like an Aldi exclusive brand food, the company will refund the money.)

The company says its staffers work at least 25 hours a week and get full health insurance benefits and dental coverage, plus participation in a 401(k) program.

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31 Responses for “Discount Grocer Aldi Opens Its Palm Coast Store Thursday on State Road 100”

  1. Wishful Thinking says:

    YAY! One more reason to call Flagler County home. My absolute favorite money saving fun place to shop. Can’t wait!

  2. Veteran says:

    We need one in the northern part of town.

  3. Quail Hollow resident says:

    It’s about time the Route 100 corridor is getting some overdue attention.

  4. sadness says:

    how many are in third world countries

  5. Joe says:

    Its about time!!! No more Walmart!!!!

  6. Jake says:

    Ghetto grocery with food that tastes like cardboard at half the price of cardboard.

  7. r&r says:

    I’ll try it. Anything will be better than that HOLE Walmart we have.

  8. cindy says:

    I agree that another Aldi in the northern part of town would be welcome, but in the meantime happy with the opening of the one on the 100

  9. Ga boy says:

    I pass this store twice a day on my way to work, and have been keeping an eye out for trucks to get an idea of when there opening,( we are soooo happy) I never saw one! I’m thinking Willie Wonka uses umpa lumpa’s to stock it, It’s truly magic.

  10. Ellen says:

    Super excited! I also heard PolloTropical plans to open on 100…. Ill be in escatsy😂😂😂

  11. Jimmy says:

    Bring it on Aldi and Guten Tag. Bis spaeter!

  12. VMC says:

    This is not a “ghetto” store don’t confuse it for Save a Lot, this store is similar to Trader Joe’s without the frills and is name brand over seas. They have organic and grass fed beef at a very low cost and also gluten free items. Their trail mix and mixed nuts are also a steal. Definitely not a Save a Lot. Aldi is like Trader Joe’s sister store.

  13. carol says:

    Welcome Aldi!!!!!

  14. blondee says:

    Yawwwwwwn. No.

  15. Just sayin' says:

    Some people will eat anything! Gross. I’ll stick with Publix.

  16. Hopeful says:

    Are we really getting a Pollo Tropical? Love that place.

  17. Joe says:

    People that are trashing Aldi obviously have never been there. They carry upscale store brand items that will meet or beat all name brand competitors at a 40% SAVINGS! I still shop at Aldi in St Augustine and will continue to do so as SR 100 is too far. We need one off Palm Coast Prky!

  18. The Truth says:

    Are you really complaining that SR-100 is too far for you yet you shop at the one in Saint Augustine?

    Aldi is a discount grocer. Their business model is based on maximizing their profit by cutting excess fat. Building a second store less than 10 miles away is not the way Aldi became what they are. Daytona Beach has one Aldi and so does Saint Augustine, but since driving down Belle Terre Parkway is too far for you they should put one on Palm Coast Parkway? Let’s be a bit more realistic.

  19. It's just me says:

    They are open today Wednesday they must be having their grand opening tomorrow Happy shopping

  20. Sherry says:

    For those who have never shopped in “wonderful” Aldi. . . Aldi and Trader Joe’s are owned by the same company and have similar business models. Aldi is very highly rated and popular in Europe. Their products are very high quality, although you may not instantly recognize the brand name. AND their prices are GREAT! It’s time Publix had some competition.

    Come on. . . think “out of the box”. . . you can do it!

    This from Time Business:

    Speaking of Aldi, which along with Trader Joe’s is owned by Germany’s Albrecht family, consumers named it as the top-ranked grocer for low prices in the poll. Both Aldi and Trader Joe’s may be small in terms of the physical sizes of their stores, but they obviously please their customers — and they seem to be proving themselves as big trendsetters in the supermarket business.

    Both sister supermarkets have been expanding rapidly in recent years. Aldi, for instance, opened nine stores in Houston last spring, and in a recent press release announcing a major expansion to Southern California, the company noted it’s been adding an average of 80 new stores every year. Aldi’s business model is based on low prices, which it achieves by practices such as stocking fewer items, eschewing national brands for cheaper generic labels and not accepting credit cards. Unlike other discount stores, however, Aldi locations are exceptionally clean and well organized — so the shopping experience doesn’t come off as second rate.

  21. Quail Hollow denizen says:

    Aldi is a great store. The one in St Augustine is always crowded. if you’re a smart shopper you’ll like it. Us on the south end of town are finally being appreciated. Big disappointment nearby however. I heard Gate got cold feet and have bailed out of this shopping center. Apparently Wawa’s rumored entry nearby has scared them away. For now I’ll pray Wawa takes Gates spot. ANYTHING but a Kangaroo/Circle K.

  22. BeechBoy says:

    My wife was there this afternoon and they do accept credit cards now…

  23. Anonymous says:

    Aldi is actually owned by the brother of the owner of Trader Joes. There you learned something new.

  24. Bill harvey says:

    I’ll stay with Whole Foods and costco

  25. Jim says:

    I should clarify “The Truth Says” I work in St Augustine so it makes more sense to continue shopping there as I live in Indian Trails…SR 100 is too damn far.

  26. Joe says:

    It’s amazing how many people hate their money and choose to throw it away at Publix$$$. I for one like my money and don’t care about 50 elegantly dressed employees, fancy shelves, 40,00 different products or nice music. Give me 40% savings and more money in my pocket! WELCOME ADLI YOU HAVE A CUSTOMER FOR LIFE!

  27. Anonymous says:

    I’m so excited for this store to open up

  28. RayD says:

    Bring your own bags and you fill them yourself. Also, don’t expect name brands or Trader Joes. Aldi is fine for what it is and another option. Any Aldi I have visited normally has long lines due to popularity and a shortage of cashiers because Aldi is into cutting costs. Also, normally located in marginal areas. For a discount grocer, Fresh Thyme blows away Aldi. Maybe it will come one day.

  29. Susan says:

    I was there this morning and used my credit card with no problem

  30. can'tfoolme says:

    Aldi originated in Germany and was the first grocery chain in that country. I shopped them over there and continue to do so here in the States and find their brands to be excellent.

  31. Stephanie says:

    Didn’t like my experience with it and it’s not how it was portrayed. Not happy and probably won’t go back. I’m sorry, but right now, it is very ghetto.

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