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Christina Hacker and Debbie Graves, neighbors in Braden Woods, say they love the low prices they saw at Aldi and plan to make the store part of their regular shopping excursions.
East County Wednesday, May 18, 2016 6 years ago

Aldi opens East County location

Lockwood Ridge/SR 70 intersection now features three grocery stores.
by: Pam Eubanks Senior Editor

The intersection of Lockwood Ridge Road and State Road 70 has become a shopper’s produce paradise.

Aldi opened its newest grocery store May 11 at 4525 53rd Ave. E., Bradenton.

The store becomes the third grocery at the intersection, with a Walmart Neighborhood Market that opened April 13 at the southeast corner of Lockwood Ridge Road and State Road 70 and a Publix Supermarket that opened October 2013 at the southwest corner of the same intersection. Aldi is located at the northeast corner.

Central Park’s Bonnie Golon, a regular shopper at Walmart, said she anxiously awaited the store’s opening.

“I love Aldi,” she said.

Aldi has more than 1,300 U.S. locations and about 4,000 stores worldwide. It’s known for its everyday low prices, unique weekly specials on non-food items and the fact it’s run European-style. Shoppers pay a quarter to use a shopping cart (and get it back when it’s returned) and pay 7 cents and up for grocery bags if you don’t bring your own.

Aldi’s Regional Director of Operations Andreas Rohlfing said the company keeps prices low by marketing its own brands, buying in bulk and having an efficient business model.

Although the new store has direct competitors across the street, Rohlfing isn’t worried. He said Aldi complements them.

“It’s perfect,” he said. “You have existing retail. There’s traffic at this intersection, for sure. You can’t get everything at Aldi.”

Creekwood resident Angela Phillips, a loyal Publix shopper, said she enjoyed her first visit to Aldi and likely will change-up her shopping routine, at least a little.

“Publix will always be my store,” she said, adding she also shops at Walmart. “But, I will come here. When you are a mom and you shop for a home of five, you do shop around. It’s exciting to see the difference in prices they offer.”

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