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An Open Letter to Trader Joe’s

Dear Joe,

Your Organic and non-GMO products are obviously a better option for my family. However, we are completely comfortable indulging in all of your chocolate covered everything. And I mean everything… from almonds to oranges and even chips, there’s plenty to choose from! We really appreciate the combination of price and quality for so many items, including Two Buck Chuck (we’ll overlook the recent increase of $0.50). You really understand how to create value!

You also understand the paradox of choice. The last thing I want is thousands of more decisions to make every day. The world is busy enough with micro decisions and overwhelming options. Thank you for paring down the 50,000 items most large grocery stores carry to approximately 4,000 well curated items that matter to me and my family. Less is more!

Your smaller amount of choices and modest store size allow me to do a week’s worth of shopping in 30 minutes or less. Plus, you never run sales or offer coupons. Which means I have less paper and stuff to keep up with in my life and not worry about the guilt of missing an ad or special. I like your straightforward style!

Your own branded items are often special products I can’t find anywhere else. You’ve found a way to strike a balance between unique, organic, healthy, affordable and easy to prepare – you really get me!

On top of all this, your people are happy! It’s so refreshing to encounter smiles from cheery employees. I know it’s because you have a great place to work and great customers ;). But you also pay your people well. They all make well over minimum wage. $13+ in most locations for store clerks, and significantly higher for managers, plus benefits.

More importantly, you’re not just good for me and my family. You are good for the entire community. Now I’m talking about real estate and not groceries. Allow me to explain…

In a recent comparison of Trader Joe’s store vs a big box Target store in the same community, Trader Joe’s value per acre is more than twice as productive per acre as the Target next door. The study was done in an incredibly suburban area, much like our town of Woodstock.

Your parking lots are notoriously small, which has also been linked to your success.
“A smaller parking lot means lower development and maintenance expenses, and a more productive use of space. It also means that Trader Joe’s can blend in with smaller stores and residential units around it, instead of requiring massive designated turn-lanes and huge amounts of land just to function.”

Trader Joe’s modestly-sized lot and store demonstrate a value of space and an interest in making the best use of it. That means higher profits per square foot for the owners and higher tax payments per square foot for the municipality, plus a convenient, affordable grocery store for residents. Everyone wins!

Your long-term impact is also a big plus for our community. “Unlike a Target or Walmart, which we’ve only seen repurposed as massive libraries, museums, and churches, most Trader Joe’s buildings are less than an acre in size, meaning they could become any number of spaces: offices, gyms, clothing stores, daycares, restaurants, and so on.”

As you explain on your website: “In 1967, the first Trader Joe’s opened its doors in Pasadena, California. Still there today – same spot, same parking lot.”

We are ready for your next Trader Joe’s location to be in Woodstock, Georgia.

Sincerest regards,
Local Mom


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4 Responses to “An Open Letter to Trader Joe’s”

  • Ginger
    Written on

    We live in the small town of Eastman, Ga. There is nothing like your store near us. It would be great to have your store come to our town. Small town low overhead. Win win situation. Please consider coming to Eastman, Ga. I would definately shop there rather than any of the other small grocery stores we have.

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