Whenever a question appears online about what businesses South Jersey people want to see in their community, the top answers are usually "Dollar General Store", "Mattress Store", and "Cell Phone Store."
Yes, I'm kidding.
The business that always seems to pop up in these kind of queries is Trader Joe's.
Trader Joe's - for those of use living in a Trader Joe's food desert - is a nationwide grocery store chain, that apparently is the greatest store of all time.
Trader's Joe fans seem to love the stores, which focus on specialty foods that apparently you just can't get anywhere else.
CNN recently published a story, based on a Trade Joe's poll, where people were asked about their favorite Trader Joe's products. The top product was Chili and Lime Flavored Rolled Tortilla Chips. Other items finishing at the top were Sparkling Honeycrisp Apple Juice, and Trader Joe's Butter Chicken.
So, how do we get Trader Joe's to come and build a store here, in the Atlantic/Cape May County area?
The store has been around for decades, but it's a private company that does not offer franchises. All the 500-plus locations, according to Wikipedia, are company owned. This means it's all up to the company to decide where to expand its footprint.
Undoubtedly, the company does extensive research to decide where to locate new stores.
But wait - there apparently is a way you can have some influence. (Although, honestly, we don't know how much influence you would have....)
Trader Joe's offers a form on their website to fill out if you'd like to see a Trader Joe's locate to your city. You can find it here. So, get to work, Trader Joe fans!
Viral Trader Joe's Foods
TikTok is the biggest social media platform right now and Trader Joe's finds are constantly going viral there. Here are the most raved-about items you can find at Trader Joe's.
Are These the Best Products at Trader Joe's?
Trader Joe's Cookie Butter. That was the first time I had ever heard the words Trader Joe's a few years ago. My friend was raving about this stuff. The store sounded intriguing. I read more about Trader Joe's and I thought it was a health food store with a bunch of products I would never put in my mouth. This place did not sound appealing to a super-picky, Midwest-comfort food-eating gal.
My doctor suggested I monitor my sodium intake, which led me to Google 'low sodium foods." An article about the topic featuring Trader Joe's low sodium products popped up in my search. The included list was long and a lot of the food sounded like something I'd actually eat. But, was it going to taste good?
I've been having to visit Rochester, MN every few months and told Google to take me to Trader Joe's. I was picturing a huge store, like a warehouse club, with a modern look. I was way off. In Rochester, Trader Joe's is located in a strip mall with a couple of other businesses. It didn't look like a fancy, hip, Gen Z kinda joint, which is what I had in my head. It seemed small. As a matter of fact, it looked old, like it had been there a while.
I was greeted with a massive display of fresh flowers. I had no idea fresh flowers were a Trader Joe's staple. As I walked through, I carefully read the labels of several products to suffice my special, low sodium diet. I had a cartful of products to try and my bill was under $80. Not only were there several products I was willing to try at Trader Joe's, they were reasonably priced. The Trader Joe's business model is based on no frills so they can provide the best products for a low price. I like that idea. I don't need fancy, I just want low prices.
I am now a Trader Joe's convert and I know what all the hype is about. Here are some of my favorite products.
P.S. Cookie butter did not make the list.