Trader Joe’s is a unique company. While there are dozens of grocery store companies in the country, Trader Joe’s simply has a different feel. Part of that is most likely because it started in my backyard and is incredibly popular throughout southern California, but that’s why I chose to write about them. Their principles and mission are clear: it’s all about value and the customer. That’s what makes them unique – they make grocery shopping seem personal and almost even fun, and the customers know they’re getting the highest quality ingredients.
Trader Joe’s mission statement reads:
At Trader Joe’s, our mission is to bring our customers the best food and beverage values and the information to make informed buying decisions. There are more than 2000 unique grocery items in our label, all at honest everyday low prices. We work hard at buying things right: Our buyers travel the world searching for new items and we work with a variety of suppliers who make interesting products for us, many of them exclusive to Trader Joe’s. All our private label products have their own “angle,” i.e., vegetarian, Kosher, organic or just plain decadent, and all have minimally processed ingredients.
From that statement, it is apparent that Trader Joe’s values their customers and genuinely cares about them. The same can’t be said for most grocery chains. Their stores have a bright, happy feel and all of their employees wear Hawaiian shirts to give a relaxed vibe. They exist for their shoppers, and the way they operate their stores show that. As they explain on their website, they do whatever they can to create low prices and offer delicious, fresh ingredients. It’s no coincidence that my mom and most people I know from home shop at Trader Joe’s whenever possible. You get better ingredients at similar or lower prices, and it’s guaranteed that they are high quality.
I think that Trader Joe’s is one of the best companies out there right now. Not only do they have admirable values, but they are also a very well-run company with smart management. They somehow manage to make grocery shopping enjoyable, and they have a mission and stick to it adamantly. That combination results in a loyal customer base and public acclaim, and shows us that sometimes, the nice guys do win.