Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hard Discount Stores - A Visit to Aldi

A few weeks ago I read an article about "hard discount" stores (Wall Street Journal; September 30, 2008; Passariello). The article talked about how these stores offer 900-1600 products, compared to large supermarkets that usually offer 20,000 products. By limiting the selection these deep discount stores save costs, which they pass onto the consumer. (Sounds like Walmart, but isn't.)

This weekend I got to experience one of the stores mentioned in the article -- Aldi -- first hand. It was like a regular store, but with no frills.

Any good conversation about waste management begins with a nod towards the ever-taboo topic (but gaining popularity) of consumption. This "hard discount" retail model -- offering a limited selection and saving on costs associated with "buying, packaging, transporting, and displaying" goods -- has some interesting implications. Not quite sure what those implications are just yet; my noodle is still cooking the subject. Please feel free to share your thoughts.


.i'll never tell. said...

howdy, it's joolie! so i just wrote a paper on trader joe's for my org theory class (go PSU MPA!), and fyi, aldi is the parent company of trader joe's. makes sense, doesn't it? have fun over there!

Meredith Sorensen said...

I had no idea! It totally makes sense: limited yet tasty selection. Go you, taking on the degree!

Unknown said...

You could have just done to Aldi's when you visited Brazil, IN so many years ago. Sounds like you're having an amazing time - so proud of you, Mer.