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12 things all Trader Joe’s employees know that most shoppers don’t

trader joe's Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Trader Joe’s stores are pretty unique in the grocery world.
So it’s no surprise the company has picked up a cult following.
Here are some facts and tips to help you out on your next Trader Joe’s run, courtesy of current and former Trader Joe’s crew members themselves. 
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Trader Joe’s stores boast plenty of unique traditions and quirky practices.

And, of course, no one knows better about them than Trader Joe’s employees themselves.

Trader Joe’s has more than 460 locations in 41 states. About 38,000 employees work for the company. Their roles are divided up into nautically themed categories, including crew members, merchants, mates, and captains.

Since its founding in 1968, the chain has acquired a cult following thanks to its unique offerings, customer service, and its ridiculously cheap wine.

Here’s a look at some facts that Trader Joe’s crew members know but many shoppers don’t.

Packaging isn’t important to the chain
Michael Nagle / Getty Images

“A core foundation of Trader Joe’s is to spend more money on the product than the packaging,” Matt Klaver, a former Trader Joe’s crew member, said on Quora. “You’ll see that in the store the same item may not look identical across the shelf, and that’s for a good reason.”

He added that the chain “spends very little money on packaging because they don’t care about small color differences or cans that don’t stack right.”

“This makes life significantly easier on the manufacturer, who in turn gives them a discount,” Klaver wrote.

Trader Joe’s sends some crew members on global food expeditions
Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Trader Joe’s goes out of its way to bring unique international fare to its customers.

In 2016, the grocery chain hired a product innovator to “travel the world looking for the most creative food trends, in order to create the most exciting — WOW! — products for Trader Joe’s,” according to the job description.

That’s right — Trader Joe’s employs people to travel around the world and taste food.

Sounds like a rough gig.

Trader Joe’s gets creative with its branding
Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Frequent Trader Joe’s shoppers may pick up on some amusing trends on certain product labels.

Here are a few examples of the chain’s creative branding, according to the website Club Trader Joe’s:

• Mexican food is billed under the name Trader Jose’s.

• Chinese food is labeled as Trader Ming’s.

Baker Josef’s refers to baked products.

• Clam chowder and fall-themed foods are sold under the name Pilgrim Joe’s.

• French food and soaps are labeled Trader Jacques.

Trader Darwin’s refers to vitamins.

• Middle Eastern cuisine is sold under the name Arabian Joe’s.

Trader Giotto’s is the label that covers the store’s Italian food.

• Japanese food receives the label of Trader Joe-San.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

See Also:

Panera Bread employees share their 9 favorite menu items — and a few secret hacks you have to try for yourselfInside Beyond Meat’s lab, where the company transforms plants into faux meat with microscopic analysis and robot mouthsPier 1 Imports is closing hundreds of its stores amid reports of an imminent bankruptcy. We visited a store and saw why the chain is struggling.

SEE ALSO: Apply here to attend IGNITION: Retail, an event focused on the future of retail, in New York City on January 14.

ALSO READ: We compared Trader Joe’s versions of iconic brands like Oreo, Cheerios, and Reese’s to the originals to see which is better

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