Aldi store opens Thursday

Kathryn Cargo By Kathryn Cargo

Aug. 9, 2017 at 9:30 p.m.
Updated Aug. 10, 2017 at 6 a.m.

Aldi opens in Victoria on Thursday. The grocery store has 1,600 locations throughout the U.S. and about 100 in Texas.

Aldi opens in Victoria on Thursday. The grocery store has 1,600 locations throughout the U.S. and about 100 in Texas.   Ana Ramirez for The Victoria Advocate

By doing away with in-house music, shopping bags and extra services, Aldi saves its customers between 20 and 50 percent on their weekly groceries, a store representative said.

"We really pride ourselves on having the highest quality products at the lowest price possible," said Karla Waddleton, Aldi's Rosenberg Division vice president.

Each cart takes a quarter for usage and returns the 25 cents after customers are done using it, Waddleton said. Other aspects of the store may be different to Victoria residents, such as not providing shopping bags.

"We don't have in-store music or dry cleaning in store; all those extra frills at the end of the day add money to a customer's shopping," she said. "We're a no-frill grocery store so we can save the customers money."

The store is small and easy to navigate with only five aisles but has about 95 percent of one's weekly shopping needs, Waddleton said.

The Aldi Finds aisle will display weekly deals on seasonal products the store may not usually carry such as a swimming pool or barbecue pit.

"(You) can find products very easily without having to maneuver through 60 aisles," she said.

The store will offer organic and gluten free products as well as meat with no antibiotics. About 90 percent of the store is exclusive to Aldi and has a double guarantee of product replacement and money back if the customer is unsatisfied.

"We take the quality of our products so seriously, every product in our store is sampled on a regular basis to ensure they're the highest quality and meet or exceed the national brand," she said.

Insight into how other grocery stores in Victoria are preparing for the new store was not clear as of Wednesday.

H-E-B spokeswoman Regina Garcia said in a statement that retail is a growing industry with a variety of customers and families to serve on a daily basis.

Walmart did not respond to a request for comments, and the owner of Dick's Food Store declined to comment.

Victoria has always been on Aldi's radar and has the population and growth for a store, Waddleton said. Establishing the store in Victoria is part of the company's initiative to increase the overall store count in the U.S. to 2,500 by the end of 2022. Aldi has more than 100 stores in Texas.

"You can save so much by shopping with us week after week, it may mean one more activity for (your) children to appreciate," she said. "The savings, if you look back over the course of a year, are pretty substantial."


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