Thursday, June 2, 2016

ALDI - A New Way to Shop Organic Deals in Southern California

This post was sponsored by ALDI as part of Influencer Activation for Influence Central. All thoughts and opinions are those of team.

We've been hearing so much about this place from other bloggers around the US and finally, we have ALDI stores here in SoCal! For anyone that shops like we do, seeking the best deals on USDA organic foods, you know what a scavenger hunt it is and how what you spend on food can so easily get out of hand. Well here's another great place to add to the rounds. I think you'll want to check ALDI out because it can seriously cut down on your grocery bill. The harshest critics on our team found some excellent deals here.

This week, we dispatched two of the most hardcore organic price shoppers from the MommyOnTheMoney team - Luxury Lady (aka Grandma) and Frank the Bank (commonly referred to as Grandpa, especially since he hasn't been much of a bank once my youngest sibling graduated college but these days he's still emptying his pockets at the grocery store like he's feeding a brood).

Nowadays, this couple make stocking up on good organic food a career. Since we unexpectedly had to move to Japan a couple weeks ago for the short term, they were more than happy to visit this exciting new store which breaks the supermarket mold and brings big time savings to small scale shopping without sacrificing quality.

The first thing they noticed about the ALDI store here in Vista, was its size. It was smaller than they expected, yet once inside they couldn't help but compare it to the big bulk box stores.

It was as if they took the excellent deals and the utilitarian experience that you get at one of those bulk chains on everything from strawberries to hula hoops and scaled it down to a manageable size for a regular family as opposed to one with umpteen kids and counting.

Although if you have given birth to a basketball team, you could probably afford to finally feed them organic food and still save a lot in this store too. Just check out the pricing on some of these items. It is more than a rollback, it's like vintage retro!

In other words, you can still score the great deals on organic pasta and peanut butter, you just aren't committed to buying enough to take you into the year 2018.

Just like us, the grandfolk eat mostly a vegan organic diet and love food. They scratch cook almost everything and are picky with what they put on the table. They even make their own pasta and bread.

We all scrutinize labels as if they were religious text and are excited when new ingredients and great tasting ready-to-eat products can make it into the rotation.

ALDI sports its own exclusive brand called SimplyNature® which includes USDA Certified organic and Non-GMO verified items. Luxury Lady was happy to report that she scored two types of USDA organic sugar that were not only a good deal, but also labeled fair-trade AND vegan. (This is a thing, now. This just in... some sugars are processed using animal bones. Animal bones. Yuck! Not ALDI sugar. It's vegan! Yay!)

For my gluten-intolerant friends, they also have their liveGfree® gluten-free products clearly marked. Everything edible in ALDI has their "Double Guarantee" where they replace the product AND refund your money if you don't like it as long as you return the unused portion and packaging.

Grandma was also happy to find some exclusive ALDI SimplyNature® Organic Apple Walnut Granola and SimplyNature® Organic Tropical Mango Granola. Her breakfast bowls can get a little repetitive but she isn't willing to comprise on... well... anything, especially not organic breakfast so she was looking forward to adding new foods into the mix.

Grandpa is not used to doing blog posts and ate the SimplyNature® Organic Salsa with Uncle Junior before anyone could take a picture. (BTW there is no aka with Uncle Junior and if you think my hubs, Daddy on the Dollar is a picky eater... let's just put a row of stars on the salsa right now because Uncle Junior liked it!)

The old folks also scored some beautiful organic fresh bananas, strawberries, and blueberries which cost significantly lower than what you would find at the other standard chains around here (we have all of them, seriously, you name it, if it exists in SoCal it is in a 1 mile radius of our hood) and there was no compromise on taste.

We also noticed that things like like SimplyNature® Organic Creamy Peanut Butter at ALDI costs the same as the sale price at some of the chains so we no longer have to shelf-clear once it goes on sale and sit on a pile that could build a peanut butter fallout shelter in the stockpile. Now you know where to raid if there's an apocalypse...

They were also excited about the non-grocery items offered at this new chain filing away some potentially great deals on handyman stuff, tech items, and things that will make this year's Frank-a-palooza pool party the best ever without "Franking the Bank" too much. (I must say, saying my dad's name this way, in verb tense, brings back fond memories of not having to pay for my own sh*t...).

Here's where it gets a little weird but coincidentally not weird at all... it just confused the old folks a little bit. They were confused when they walked in about depositing a quarter to receive a shopping cart, which is refunded when you return it, and they were confused about having a checkout clerk scan their items, yet being sent to the next station to pack it themselves.

See, this is really the core of how ALDI saves us money. They aren't paying people to retrieve shopping carts - you do it. And nobody bags your groceries. Bingo! You do that too. The coincidence part is that this self-bagging anomaly is common practice, here in Japan, and I've found that it speeds things along and it's no big deal.

The cool part is that you kinda feel encouraged to use your own bags or none at all, hence less waste, and again, less overhead for the store, meaning more savings for you.

So if you are lucky enough to live within shopping distance of an ALDI store, the family suggests you give it a try. Bring a quarter for your cart, and a bag for your groceries, and expect some really sweet stock up deals that you don't actually have to stock up on because they'll still be there when you come back.

Our core philosophy is that good organic food should be accessible to everyone, regardless of income, and this place is at the forefront of making that possible.

Find out if there is an ALDI near you and keep checking ALDI on Facebook to find out the latest updates promotions, or if one near you will be opening soon.

The snack aisle is a whole new adventure. 

Great if you're totally sick of standard fare. Bad if you want to look like you don't visit snack aisles.

You may as well just size up on your swimsuit. Don't worry, the Vista ALDI has you covered there too. They totally know the snack aisle would get out of hand for some of us.

Forget coupons, save yourself some time and just get the staples here without them and still pay even less.

Who needs one of these wagons? Truth - everyone. You are not human unless you feel the need...

Now Gramps is reaching into pictures. Does he totally not get this blogging thing or just so super excited about scoring a deal that he just dgaf?!

Man they eat a lot of bananas and bake a lot of delish banana bread. They're going to need a bigger freezer now.

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