Tuesday, January 02, 2007

beware trader joes?

I was browsing through new yelps and I saw this review of Trader Joes. This seems like reasonable advice, as I have accidentally bought expired stuff from here and moldy veggies, too.

A lot of people do not know what goes on behind the scenes at Trader Joes. They do have a lot of unique grocery items and great prices for penny savers, but their perishable items are a whole new story. They sell meats with only a day to go on expiration dates, produce that constantly have mold, bruises, or potatoes and onions with buds and shoots growing out of them. Their bread also is left on the shelf until the day before it expires. The flowers as abundant as they are displayed and beautiful are at an eye catching price. But once again, buyers be aware.... the flower department will try to extend the life of the flowers as long as they can make a sale and just pluck out dead flowers to keep the bundle going. So, if your bouquet dies in a few days, you will know why. At least you can return it to the store for another bouquet that may die. Most of all if you shop at this location, I would inspect your food from every angle! This store has a major problem with keeping their perishable section 'non-moldy'. How do I know? Because I am a former employee of this store. I love their frozen foods, canned foods, drinks, and the variety of nuts and teas they offer, but I would never buy anything perishable from this store. Oh, and I would check the dates on the fresh fish and chicken that you purchase...... they usually expire within a day so you really need to eat it the day you purchase it or by the next day. And, if you are lucky and if it was kept cold, it won't be rotten the day you take it home. For these exact reasons, I will shop at Whole Foods. Yes, it is more expensive than Trader Joes, but you are paying for quality at this store. Produce, chicken, fish, dairy and anything else perishable at this store is top notch. If that is what you want, then go to Whole Foods. Afterall, you do get what you pay for. However, the good thing is, is that they are like Nordstrom. They will return anything you bring back for any reason.... you can chew on that while you taste mold on your peaches.....

Alisha K. also gave a bad review to the new Mana's on Broadway but then someone else replied that it is good for ramen so I will have to try that.

14 comments:

leon said...

I like how you can buy a bunch of brown/black bananas at the co-op for 99 cents a pound. You would think they'd reduce the price so they'd sell before they spoil.

Anonymous said...

I love TJ's!

OMF and I shop there every Sun, however, I never buy any produce there, except maybe salad greens and bananas. Not because of mold or expiration dates but because it drives me crazy that almost all of their produce is wrapped in plastic. There is something so blatantly unnatural about it that it just seems absurd.
lm

beckler said...

i love tj's too for a few things(goat yogurt!), but i just thought this was good advice. i never buy meat there and after this i don't think i ever will. i used to buy pizza dough there and the selection would usually be thisclose to expired, but now i just make my own, which is quite easy. don't let the man oppress you by making you buy bread, bagels, pizza dough, and pasta. make your own! (this message brought to you by the people liberation from store bought bread products army)

Anonymous said...

Another one to watch out for is the Morning Lite cereal. It's a great breakfast cornerstone, but I've bought two boxes in which all the cereal was stuck together by the honey. Shake first!

Jed

Anonymous said...

It was always my assumption that everything at TJs was factory overruns and other surplus warehouse junk that gets repackaged. They have interesting stuff there but, seriously, I think most of it fell off the back of a truck.

FFT said...

TJ produce is all B grade or less and they get it for off-market prices (this from my brah and his gf who work there). Even if it is organic, most of it is not local.

Anonymous said...

Bananas aren't supposed to be sold green, but most grocery stores sell them that way and we've all gotten used to them being plain yellow or slightly green. I think they actually taste better when they're slightly brown. I've never seen severely rotten bananas at the co-op, although they need every dime they can get now that the Elk Grove store is closing down and the co-op is $3M in the hole. Ouch.

-Erik

leon said...

I always pictured a TJ's food factory, where some guy wearing overalls yells out "Start up the hummus" and hummus starts coming down a conveyor belt after a foreman pulls a lever marked "hummus". After they are done packaging the hummus, some guy with a hose washes down the conveyor belt then yells "ok...start up the shellfish!" then crab meat starts coming down the conveyor belt...and so on and so forth...(peanut butter, masala sauce, pasta, etc...)

leon said...

True Erik, but they probably wound up tossing half the bananas...either way, a financial loss.

beckler said...

I like my bananas just on the edge of green. Anything with a brown spot is too sweet. Man, that sucks about the Elk Grove store. Everyone seemed to know that was a dumb idea, I wonder why they forged ahead?

beckler said...

here's the article

http://www.sacbee.com/103/story/102112.html

darin said...

i'm voting for ripe bananas. if there's some green, it's not ripe yet. it'll be starchy and probably give you a stomache ache, like most unripe fruit. a fair amount of freckles is about right. but then i usually use mine for smoothies or with oatmeal or something, so the extra sweetness is good. the co-op bananas seem to ripen absurdly fast, maybe 'cause they're organic & there's such a big pile. but you can go in one day and every one is green and the next day most are fully ripe.
yeah, too bad about the elk grove co-op. i guess they figured that with that many people in the area they could get those who would otherwise go to whole foods or trader joe's or whatever. but apparently the concept of a co-op is just too confusing for elk grovians.

beckler said...

any bets on how long the great banana debate can rage on before things turn ugly? will smitty make a swipe at the band? will someone anonymous accuse me of spreading slanderous fruit gossip? stay tuned...

Skipper said...

What I never knew before I came to Germany is that TJ's is actually owned by a German billionaire who founded a discount grocer chained called Aldi.

http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,1564,1091106,00.html

There are a couple others such as Penny Markt and Lidl, but Aldi actually has really good produce and super cheap prices compared to the bigger chains with higher prices just because they offer a larger selection.

Nowadays, you can actually find Trader Joe type labels on some of the food stuffs like nuts and such, but they are labeled Trader Flo's. It funny. It's also funny that you can buy a television and discounted laptop at Aldi. They really know how to diversify here.