Author Topic: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?  (Read 13823 times)

MayDay

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S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« on: October 21, 2014, 02:14:10 PM »
I have tried to shop at Aldi's in the past, and I wasn't thrilled.  At the time the produce looked awful (I understand this has changed) and many/most of shelf foods I was interested in buying seemed to be low quality.  Both in waste, and my horror upon reading the ingredient labels. 

I know the common refrain both here and elsewhere is that generic foods are often exactly the same.  I find that to be true at my regular grocery store (Kroger) but not at all true at Aldi's, at least as of 5 years ago.

So does anyone else have this problem?  Or have things just changed a lot at Aldi's in the last five years? 

FiguringItOut

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2014, 02:28:27 PM »
I've only been inside Aldi's once about two months ago (there is none close to me, but when I was visiting a friend I poped into the one there).  I was not impressed at all. 

Practically everything I looked at I can get for the same price or little cheaper on loss-leader sales in my local supermarkets.  Meet was more expensive then what I pay on deep sales when I stock up.  Canned beens/veggies were $1 each, I can get them for $0.79 on sale at my supermaket.

Generally, not planning to go there again.

cavewoman

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2014, 02:35:56 PM »
If you want positive Aldi reviews, check out the "Aldi Experiment" thread :)

ZiziPB

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2014, 02:36:06 PM »
There are certain foods that I do buy at Aldis but I agree with you regarding the overall low quality.  Especially the produce - in my local Aldis it looks like rejects from other stores that are about to go bad.  For non-produce, I read the labels carefully and buy selectively.

MayDay

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2014, 02:44:21 PM »
If you want positive Aldi reviews, check out the "Aldi Experiment" thread :)

Haha I know.  That's what spurred this post. I didn't want my distaste of Aldis to get lost in the love-fest.

Do I have high standards? Do they vary regionally? Have they improved recently?


Iron Mike Sharpe

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2014, 02:56:24 PM »
The only thing I have problems with is bags of apples late in the season.  Everything else is fine for me.

I started shopping at Aldi close to two years ago.  For the first couple of weeks I kept a spreadsheet of the unit cost of each item of food I bought, each time I went shopping.  The few times I had gone to a regular supermarket, a WalMart or a Target, I compared the unit costs from Aldi to these other stores.  Aldi was way cheaper than all of the other options for close to 100% of the items on my spreadsheet.  I would just go up and down the aisles looking at my sheet on my phone and it wasn't even close.  I'd imagine those stores you could get cheaper products, but I never read the circulars to find out when the "sales" occur and I don't coupon.  I like to just show up and buy what I came for and not play these silly games the stores do of discounting products one week and jacking them up the rest of the quarter.  Makes no sense to me and is the reason I won't shop anywhere else if I can get it at Aldi.

lizzzi

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2014, 02:59:29 PM »
I use Aldi's weekly, but as others have posted, you have to be mindful. My list will have what I need, and then I'll divide it into two lists--what I'm going to buy at Aldi's, and what I'm going to buy at the Giant Eagle. (Giant Eagle is an expensive grocery, but again, I'm careful and very selective about what I buy there.It's around the corner, so little travel expense. Aldi's is five miles away.) I do not like Aldi's salmon or canned tuna. I don't like their Reeva brand dishwasher detergent. I don't buy their eggs, because for me it is worth the extra money to buy pasteurized eggs at the Giant Eagle and not have to worry about salmonella if I want to use some eggs raw. Sometimes I get some produce at Aldi's, sometimes I don't like the looks of it. It depends. But I highly recommend using Aldi's. You'll save a fortune. Just be judicious.

Bobberth

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2014, 03:10:59 PM »
Aldi has stepped up it's quality and healthy options in the last few years.   The owner is a brother to the family that owns Trader Joe's so I think Aldi is trying to up their quality either to continue a sibling rivalry or because it's cheaper to buy even more store brand product and then split it between two stores.  Either way, it's been a great improvement.  You do need a skeptical eye with the produce though.  They don't keep it refrigerated so it goes bad sooner.  That's no problem with some types of produce and a big problem with others.  They have the best prices on eggs in town here, buying by the dozen even beats Sams & Costco's price on 4 dozen trays. 

Aldi runs its business very well by keeping popular and high selling food on constant stock and then moving seasonal sellers in temporarily so it does takes some getting used to knowing what you can and can't buy there. 

Dicey

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2014, 03:12:34 PM »
*Excluding the few name brand products they have - don't by coke products at Aldi.  WM and Target do alternating sales every week anyway.

Wow! If you're really trying to live a mustachian lifestyle, why not give up soda completely? Your budget and your body will both benefit.

My only complaint is that Aldi is not in my state. One of my other favorite blogs is The Frugal Girl. Kristen writes about Aldi often. We saw one while on vacation last year and stocked up on everything we needed for a one week condo rental. Liked it so much, we went again before we headed home. We bought cute blue Aldi shopping bags (10/$1.00) as "souvenirs" for our frugal friends back home. 

I don't need big grocery store razzle dazzle, so Aldi plus an occasional side of Winco and Costco would be some kind of heaven to me.

cavewoman

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2014, 03:20:26 PM »
If you want positive Aldi reviews, check out the "Aldi Experiment" thread :)

Haha I know.  That's what spurred this post. I didn't want my distaste of Aldis to get lost in the love-fest.

Do I have high standards? Do they vary regionally? Have they improved recently?

High standards are good in terms of food, right?  I posted in the Aldi-love-fest that my memories of Aldi as a kid were general low-quality, so I do think that they have improved.

I think they do vary regionally, heck, they vary week-to-week!  My biggest complaint of Aldi is that you might find something you love (vodka pasta sauce, for example) and buy it for weeks and then BAM it's gone.  no note, nothing.

I also think that Aldi is one of those stores that is ... how can I say what I feel?  haiku?

Aldi has the smarts
low overhead - high saving
different frame of mind

And what I mean is, I feel like they look at the overhead of most stores:  large layout, fancy deli/bakery, baggers (or just bags) and cut that all out.  They pay well in wages and cut prices.  They don't do much trickery with loss leaders, they only sell what sells.

Not to sound too much like an apostle, though I know I do :)

Gone Fishing

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2014, 03:22:00 PM »
One thing I like about Aldi is that they seem to fix quality issues over time.  10 years ago, we did not like their cheese (orange rubber) but now it is much better, their corn muffin mix was not very good, now they carry Jiffy, there have been a few others as well, but I do not recall at the moment.   The biggest gripe right now is that they moved to a very thin milk carton that will spring a leak on occasion.  My wife complained and they gave her a free gallon of milk and would probably do it every time one leaked if we asked, but I would not abuse their service.  Also, I am not a fan of the gas filled blister packs of meat.  Sometimes the fresh produce has been picked over by the time I get there, but usually things are okay.  I would like them to keep a few more boxes upfront. 

In total I probably have more complaints about the regular grocery stores, like the number of things that do not ring up correctly for starters... 

cavewoman

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2014, 03:24:11 PM »
oh gosh, I forgot my favorite part -

even with bagging yourself, the cashiers are SO FRIGGEN FAST that the time of checkout (in line, my turn, bagged and out the door) has to be 1/2 of a Wal Mart or Shop n Save.  My heart sings for those ringers.

MayDay

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2014, 03:31:26 PM »
I think part of my issue is that if they don't have what I need, I am not going to be pleased.  I get most of my produce from my garden in the summer, and costco frozen veggies in the winter.  I buy my beans and grains in bulk from a local supplier and get eggs from a local farmer.  So my typical list might be a random assortment of things like:

Yogurt
Oat milk (must be oat, cannot be soy or almond)
Random specific baking or cooking ingredients like wheat gluten, chocolate chips, low sodium soy sauce, etc
Whole wheat pasta
Peanuts/other nuts
Tofu
Random specific veggies that we are buying fresh for a recipe.

So if I get there and the chocolate chips ingredients are icky (this is the specific one I remember from my last Aldi's attempt) the peanuts have msg (about half the peanut brands out there seem to add this) and they don't have half the other things, my frustration level will be very high. 

Despite all my complainy-pants, I should probably try it anyway, the next time I am at Home Depot which is directly next to Aldi's, so it wouldn't cost any added gas. 

« Last Edit: October 21, 2014, 03:33:40 PM by MayDay »

hdatontodo

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2014, 03:42:13 PM »
The Mrs and I love Aldi's. She goes there weekly.

johnhenry

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2014, 03:50:17 PM »
When I was a kid going to Aldi with my parents, we were often the only kids with shoes, and I'm being completely serious.  Not that clientele has anything to do with quality, but the perception of Aldi as well as the reality has changed over the last 20 years around here.

I shopped there a lot when I was a young, single and still paid for everything with my debit card and didn't make nearly as many trips to the grocery as I do now that I have a family of 4.

We now shop mainly at Kroger, mainly because it's VERY close to our home.  Since Aldi doesn't take credit cards, I figure that's an extra 2% cheaper it needs to be to make it worthwhile.... another reason we usually just go to Kroger.  We try to stock up on most big bulk items at Sam's Club, get most of our fresh fruits, veggies, meats at Kroger.  We do still make 2-3 trips per year to Aldi.  When we are in that part of town, we'll stock up on the items that we can get there cheaper, but when we run the numbers it doesn't seem worth it for us to regularly drive the extra bit it would require.  The savings/quality doesn't beat Kroger by enough to make it worthwhile for us.

And there are definitely some items for which Aldi just doesn't have a brand that tastes good (to us).  That will keep it from ever being our "regular" grocery store.  I'm not hella rich, but I'm rich enough that I'm not gonna swallow hard to choke down something that tastes a little bit like the conveyor belt at the factory..... even if it is 20 cents cheaper than Kroger.

I do have respect for the checkout workers there.  Part of me likes to give them business just because of that efficiency.  But the lines are sometimes long enough that it doesn't always go quicker there than at Kroger.

And I ain't gonna lie.  It's no fun bagging and boxing and getting individual canned goods loaded up with 2 toddlers "helping".  No big deal when I was single and buying for one.

galliver

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2014, 04:04:43 PM »
Your list doesn't seem Aldi-appropriate to me, MayDay. My mom's Aldi list used to be something like: flour, sugar, salt, oats, cooking oil (canola), canned peas, corn, beans, and tomatoes, milk. She would check the meat and produce for deals, but rarely find any (the quality at that location/time was pretty low). I don't even know if they would have specialty groceries like tofu and oat milk. Anyway, maybe given your other food sources, Aldi isn't for you? It was highly promoted by friends when it opened in my college town 2 years ago, particularly for produce. But by then if I made the trip up to where it was, I wanted the selection of Meijer across the road, and the prices there suited me fine. Now I've moved and they don't even have Aldi out here.

It could also be local variance; I've definitely seen grocery stores from the same chain vary in their cleanliness and quality of product; no reason Aldi would be an exception.

crispy

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2014, 04:14:35 PM »
I am a big fan of Aldi, but I do think that some stores are better than others.  We have two very nice Aldi stores near us and the produce at both are really good.  The few times we have had issues, the store has been willing to issue a refund with no questions asked.  I generally like most of their food and do about 95% of my grocery shopping there.  I love that I can be in and out of there in no time at all.

If you haven't been there in 5 years, I would encourage you to try it again because I have seen a lot of improvements in food quality and selection.  For example, they now offer an organic line and a gluten-free line of product.  I am not gluten-free, but I have friends who are and they rave about the gluten-free products (and the prices!).

The only food there that I have tried and hated (truly hated!) was their BBQ sauce, and I am not even that picky.  I swear it tasted like body odor smells.  The now sell Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ which is delicious.  I think they really do keep track of what sells and what's returned and adjust accordingly. 

deborah

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2014, 04:58:09 PM »
Aldi cheeses won best of show for commercial cheeses at one of the largest Australian shows - so here they have some high quality cheeses. They also take credit cards here. Bags is not an issue, since where I live we all have to supply our own bags or pay for them.

NCGal

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2014, 07:31:14 PM »
I shop there every week or every other week. We did a challenge, to spend no more than $50/week cash on groceries for a month. I couldn`t have done that anywhere else...recently I refused to buy butter there because I thought it was expensive at $3.50. Then I went to Walmart and it was 4.50. The staples I buy  are cereal, pasta, milk, half and half, shredded cheese, pasta sauce, bagels (very good for packaged at $1.29), whole wheat sandwich thins (Arnold brand is twice as much in supermarket), canned albacore tuna. The best buys are frozen veggies at .99/lb and to me they test as good as Green Giant.

FYI - I have not tested this, but a neighbor told me Aldi will let you return anything, including food you have tried, but do not like.

Edit: You asked about complaints. I don`t like their canned beans, and pesto sauce, although much cheaper than others is not so good.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2014, 07:36:27 PM by NCGal »

Dee18

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2014, 07:45:20 PM »
I have two Aldis stores near me.  At one, the produce is always great and usually fully stocked.  At the other, the produce is often past it's prime, so simply not available.  Lucky for me the closer one is the good one, but I do wonder how they can be so different when the supplier is the same.

lizzzi

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2014, 07:54:12 PM »
I tend to buy my produce that is going to keep well from Aldi's: potatoes, cabbage, carrots, apples, and, most recently, pumpkins. They had huge pumpkins for, I believe, $2.99 apiece. Moms were in there filling whole shopping carts with nothing but pumpkins! For soft fruits and vegetables…berries, lettuce, etc. I may possibly buy it at Aldi's if it looks great, but am far more likely to spend a little more and get that stuff at the Giant Eagle. I have only ever used the one Aldi, so cannot speak to quality varying store-to-store.

KBecks2

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2014, 08:21:18 PM »
It all started with the pumpkins.  I went to go find the cheapest pumpkins I could and decided to try Aldi.  They had the cheapest pumpkins - $2.50 each for large pumpkins vs. $5 at Wal Mart.

So, I explored the store and bought some inexpensive wine, crackers, pretzels, things like that.

I decided to go again and have been now a few times in the past 2 weeks.   Here's what I have learned:

-- Milk has no growth hormone and is $3.00 v $3.50 or $4.00 for milk elsewhere.
-- Butter $3.00 pound - less than other stores
-- Pretzels, $1-something per bag vs. $3.00 per bag
-- We tried the Savoritz crackers and cheese crackers and they taste better than Ritz and Cheese Its.
-- Greek yogurt $0.79 vs. $1.25
-- Sugar cereals are $1.79-$1.89/box and taste better than the store.
-- Cucumbers $0.39 cents
-- Box of spaghetti $0.99 at both stores, but wait, Aldi is 1.5 lbs vs. 1 lb at the regular store. 

It's so much cheaper than the "normal" store.  Selection is smaller, but that is OK.   

I agree with shopping Aldi first then filling in at a more traditional store.   I don't work full time so I have time to make the trips. 

We eat an un-fancy diet.  I am sure if you need specific and uncommon foods, it would be less beneficial.

Zamboni

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2014, 08:26:36 PM »
I tried the local Aldi's only once (in the past 6 months.)  I was thoroughly unimpressed.  Quality seemed really low, especially for the produce, and prices are much cheaper for loss leader items at my normal grocery store.  Since we stock up on loss leaders and just fill in a few extras around that, shopping there would make no sense for me.  But we have a glut of different chains here, so competition keeps prices down across the board, which I am acutely aware of whenever I visit friends or family in another city. 

lizzzi

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2014, 08:41:03 PM »
Here is one example of many: Giant Eagle is having a big sale. Campbell's soup is only going to be $1.00 per can. I normally keep a can of tomato soup and a can of chicken noodle soup in the house, due to family preferences. So wahoo--I can get them for $1.00 per can. But wait! At Aldi's they are always, day in and day out, 59 cents per can for the Aldi's brand, which tastes identical to the Campbell's. Needless to say, I buy canned soup at Aldi's. (But since I'm Mustachian, I weekly make a big pot of home-made soup, using broth and veggies purchased at Aldi's--Monday is home-made soup night at our house.)

cavewoman

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #24 on: October 22, 2014, 07:15:27 AM »
If you want positive Aldi reviews, check out the "Aldi Experiment" thread :)

Haha I know.  That's what spurred this post. I didn't want my distaste of Aldis to get lost in the love-fest.

Do I have high standards? Do they vary regionally? Have they improved recently?

I'm sorry, I should really leave this thread, but I just realized...

Did the S/O mean spin off???  Learned something new today!

ZiziPB

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2014, 07:34:55 AM »
I tend to buy my produce that is going to keep well from Aldi's: potatoes, cabbage, carrots, apples, and, most recently, pumpkins. They had huge pumpkins for, I believe, $2.99 apiece. Moms were in there filling whole shopping carts with nothing but pumpkins! For soft fruits and vegetables…berries, lettuce, etc. I may possibly buy it at Aldi's if it looks great, but am far more likely to spend a little more and get that stuff at the Giant Eagle. I have only ever used the one Aldi, so cannot speak to quality varying store-to-store.

In my experience, even produce that you would expect to last is hit or miss from Aldis.  I bought a bag of potatoes only to throw out half of it within a week or two because they rotted.  Same with onions, etc.  I still shop at Aldis but am really careful about inspecting what I buy.

lizzzi

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2014, 09:30:21 AM »
I think there must be some quality issues varying from store to store. Obviously experiences are varying among us. My "system" of buying everything that I can at Aldi's, and then looping back to the closest grocery to my house--the Giant Eagle--for everything else--with careful lists and menus worked out in advance--works great in terms of money spent on food and also travel time and mileage. YMMV. But I have cut my grocery bill in half, and we are eating much healthier than pre-MMM.

Bob W

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2014, 09:55:43 AM »
Seems like we need a real Aldi's challenge --

Here is your list (semi paleo)--

Eggs ($1 dozen),  Chicken (89 cent pound whole chicken),  Spinach $2 large bag, tea ($1, 100 bags)  frozen broccoli ($1.25 16 oz),  onions,  carrots, mushrooms, hamburger ($2 lb for 80/20) Potatoes (98 cents for 5 pounds). 

I bought these items in the last week as either loss leaders at stores I pass daily or Walmart. 

Can Aldi's beat this?  Remember,  Walmart will match comparable items no questions asked. I prefer to just scan the ads and match when possible. 

We keep our budget low in part by following loss leaders, stocking up when they are on sale and keeping it simple.  We don't buy prepared or packaged foods generally.  Hardly ever buy fruit due to the high sugar content and questionable nutritional benefits . 

Haven't checked lately but I'm guestimating 2 dollars per day per person for whole foods. 

Have done Aldis in the past.  Not even a little impressed.

BlueMR2

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2014, 10:01:45 AM »
The big problem I have with Aldi's is lack of selection.  I usually come back with only half of what I went for.  The rest I end up going to Krogers to get.

epipenguin

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2014, 10:04:16 AM »
I have really been getting into Aldi lately, whereas I used to hate them. The quality of produce at my local Aldi's seems to me to have gone way up, but more likely, the way I am shopping has changed.

I don't go into Aldi with a list of things I need. Instead, I go in once a week and see what I can find. With produce, I buy what looks good and preferably is organic, and work my meals around that. Last week I got some great local avocados, a bag of kale greens, a bag of organic apples, organic grape tomatoes, some delicious blackberries, and mushrooms. I still had some sweet potatoes, squash and blueberries left over from the previous week, otherwise I'd have bought those too as they still looked good. None of the other produce really appealed, but that's OK, I'm sure this week there'll be something new in stock.

For other things, luckily for me I don't really mind low quality coffee, or canned salmon. I mean, their salmon is wild caught Alaskan salmon, so it's good quality but it doesn't taste of much. The almond milk and eggs are fine. The cats seem OK with the kitty litter from there.  Canned beans are canned beans - I don't notice much of a difference.

KBecks2

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #30 on: October 22, 2014, 10:52:47 AM »
Seems like we need a real Aldi's challenge --

Here is your list (semi paleo)--

Eggs ($1 dozen),  Chicken (89 cent pound whole chicken),  Spinach $2 large bag, tea ($1, 100 bags)  frozen broccoli ($1.25 16 oz),  onions,  carrots, mushrooms, hamburger ($2 lb for 80/20) Potatoes (98 cents for 5 pounds). 

I bought these items in the last week as either loss leaders at stores I pass daily or Walmart. 

Can Aldi's beat this?  Remember,  Walmart will match comparable items no questions asked. I prefer to just scan the ads and match when possible. 

We keep our budget low in part by following loss leaders, stocking up when they are on sale and keeping it simple.  We don't buy prepared or packaged foods generally.  Hardly ever buy fruit due to the high sugar content and questionable nutritional benefits . 

Haven't checked lately but I'm guestimating 2 dollars per day per person for whole foods. 

Have done Aldis in the past.  Not even a little impressed.

That is a good challenge!  I'm all for saving grocery money in any way.   So you are checking the grocery ads and taking your best deals -- how difficult is it to get the price matches at Wal-Mart? 

justajane

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #31 on: October 22, 2014, 11:20:51 AM »
*Excluding the few name brand products they have - don't by coke products at Aldi.  WM and Target do alternating sales every week anyway.

Wow! If you're really trying to live a mustachian lifestyle, why not give up soda completely? Your budget and your body will both benefit.

Couldn't you say the same thing about beer? Would you?

Dicey

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #32 on: October 22, 2014, 11:53:42 AM »
*Excluding the few name brand products they have - don't by coke products at Aldi.  WM and Target do alternating sales every week anyway.

Wow! If you're really trying to live a mustachian lifestyle, why not give up soda completely? Your budget and your body will both benefit.

Couldn't you say the same thing about beer? Would you?
Lemme see, I "could" say the same thing about anything in excess. Beer, wine, spirits, tobacco, recreational drugs, tacos, birthday cake, the sky's the limit! There's even a limit on little green soldiers. A wise mustachian knows when enough is enough.

justajane

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #33 on: October 22, 2014, 12:01:59 PM »
*Excluding the few name brand products they have - don't by coke products at Aldi.  WM and Target do alternating sales every week anyway.

Wow! If you're really trying to live a mustachian lifestyle, why not give up soda completely? Your budget and your body will both benefit.

Couldn't you say the same thing about beer? Would you?
Lemme see, I "could" say the same thing about anything in excess. Beer, wine, spirits, tobacco, recreational drugs, tacos, birthday cake, the sky's the limit! There's even a limit on little green soldiers. A wise mustachian knows when enough is enough.

I didn't see any mention of excess. My point is that soda is oftentimes reflexively viewed as a frugal Mustachian no-no; yet somehow beer in moderation is allowed. Per ounce soda is a lot cheaper than beer, and neither one has any health benefits. I intentionally didn't mention wine, because some studies claim a health benefit.

sheepstache

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #34 on: October 22, 2014, 02:38:23 PM »

My only complaint is that Aldi is not in my state. One of my other favorite blogs is The Frugal Girl. Kristen writes about Aldi often. We saw one while on vacation last year and stocked up on everything we needed for a one week condo rental. Liked it so much, we went again before we headed home. We bought cute blue Aldi shopping bags (10/$1.00) as "souvenirs" for our frugal friends back home. 



Ha ha, yes! I was traveling and got the chance to go to an Aldi's and I was so excited about it, it was like a tourist destination for me!

Weedy Acres

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #35 on: October 22, 2014, 04:47:26 PM »
I'm in the camp of "shop at Aldi first, then top off from Kroger."  I have patronized 2 different Aldis, due to a relocation, and both prices and produce quality varied.  My results:
-Staples (milk, eggs, WW bread, flour, sugar, oatmeal, cheese, etc.):  all good, and always less expensive than big stores
-Processed foods (pasta, spaghetti sauce, peanut butter, cereal, applesauce, ice cream):  I have yet to find something I don't like of theirs.  Spouse actually likes their generic oreos better than the real ones.
-Fruit:  Their selection can sometimes be on the unripe side.  I've learned to better select, and how to ripen stuff at home before eating.  If none of the stuff in the bin passes the ripe test, I'll skip purchase.  I read the Kroger circulars weekly, and buy their produce if it's cheaper than Aldi.  That happens maybe 25% of the time. 
-Vegetables:  Broccoli and summer squash tends to be a little on the "old" side (noticeable but not untenable).  Other stuff (potatoes, onions, cabbage, carrots, iceberg lettuce, tomatoes) is fine.  I get other lettuce at Kroger if I can't grow it in my garden.
-Meat:  We are 95% chicken/turkey only.  Kroger regularly sells boneless chicken breasts for $1.99/lb, so I stock up the freezer then, as it's less than Aldi.  I've bought Aldi's ground turkey, bacon, and sausage and they're all fine.
-Spices:  Dirt cheap.  They've got all the main ones.  Love this.

Gripes:
1.  Some of their stuff is weirdly considered "seasonal."  Like they only have baking powder in the fall. 
2.  The lightning-fast checkers sometimes toss produce in the cart, enabling bruising.
3.  I hate when they ask "did you find everything you needed?"  I nearly always say no, and when they inquire, I'll tell them they have no cilantro (or whatever), and they say "we don't carry that."  Duh.  Why bother asking?

NCGal

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #36 on: October 22, 2014, 05:54:18 PM »
I previously mentioned I dislike the canned beans. What I actually meant was the canned baked beans. They`re mushy and don`t compare at all to Bush. The plain ones are just fine, as are the canned tomato products.

Pigeon

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #37 on: October 22, 2014, 06:14:40 PM »
I wonder how you milk an oat...

I like Aldi a lot, but ours is further away than a bunch of traditional groceries, so I don't get there as often as I would like. It is great for the basics and their prices are generally lower than sale prices elsewhere. If you have special diet requirements, it isn't the place for you. I buy baking supplies, cereal, snacks, tomato products, dried beans, milk, cheese, eggs, yogurt, tea, some paper products, kitty litter, ice cream, breads, and some produce. Some is great. I love the four packs of baby lettuce for half the price of Hannaford. Some produce doesn't thrill me. I can almost always get meat cheaper buying loss leaders elsewhere. Some of the seasonal stuff I swear must be made by the same producers Trader Joes uses. And the chocolate is awesome.

Ynari

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #38 on: October 24, 2014, 03:23:01 AM »
I was very unhappy with my Aldi visits over the summer. I went a few times and everything just tasted bad. The chicken was clearly lower quality than my usual grocer, the fruit was worst, even the milk tasted cheap. I might have saved 25 cents a gallon at Aldis but that is not worth it.

Store brand at the big store grocery almost always wins out over aldis weird selection, at least the one near me.

FoundPeace

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #39 on: October 24, 2014, 03:32:54 AM »
I've found that in order to get the best produce/meat I have to go in the morning. The Aldi's I've been to have quite a different selection in the morning than they do in the evening.

Astatine

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #40 on: October 24, 2014, 05:13:28 AM »
I don't buy fresh meat or fish from any supermarket (Aldi or otherwise) - only from a butcher or fishmonger. Much better quality and it supports small local businesses.

Other than that, I'm pretty happy with the quality of everything Aldi, except for their pasta. It's worse than Woolworths el cheapo homebrand stuff (which is what I always use). We go once a month or so to stock up on non-perishables, and occasionally buy fruit or veg if it's on super special. Again, I try to avoid buying fruit and veg from any supermarket. The small ethnic greengrocers tend to be cheaper and faster to do my shopping. They're always really friendly. And again, this supports a small local business which matters to me.

coffeelover

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Re: S/O: does anyone have quality complaints at Aldi's?
« Reply #41 on: October 24, 2014, 07:15:39 AM »
I do one to two big shopping trips there a month. Usually spending between 150 to 200 each time. For Aldi this is a huge chunk of money.

I've been shopping at various Aldi's in MI depending on where I'm living. I've had no issues with any of them.
Produce you just really need to be picky about and buy mostly in season.

I buy my turkey ham there, also my rolls of sausage and bags of chicken tenderloins. Bacon, polish sausage and a huge variety of canned goods that are half the price compared to my local Kroger.
I buy the kids snacks, applesauce, fruit cups, crackers etc. Sometimes I buy cereal there too.

I absolutely love our Aldi!

I especially love that a Aldi by me has started carrying lots of GF foods. I have a stepdaughter who has celiac disease and they now carry a ton of snack items for her. Which is awesome.

Overall I keep our grocery budget for 7 people under 700 a month because of Aldi.

I guess it is dependent on your region on whether or not your Aldi's are awesome.

I'm sorry yours isn't, maybe try a different one or go back every few months and try different products.

I have nothing to complain about with mine, love love them.