Written by Edward Smith
Aldi commemorated its first foray into the Fresno/Clovis area with a ribbon cutting Thursday morning.
The Germany-based grocer and supermarket opened its doors at 1725 Herndon Ave. near Fowler Avenue, taking over a former Fresh & Easy location.
“We couldn’t be more excited to be here for the Clovis community,” said Alexandra Skinkis, director of operations for the company.
Skinkis said efficiency is what makes Aldi unique. For instance, rather than seeing a dozen ketchup options, the grocer might only sell two brands, making the shopping experience more streamlined and suited for smaller-footprint stores.
“You’ll see about 90% of our products are Aldi exclusive brands,” Skinkis said. “It’s one of the ways we reduce costs.”
Most of the 1,700 “fastest moving products” are still in the cases on the shelf, making stocking easier for the employees working there. They even use grocery carts that require a $.25 deposit to unlock them. Once the cart goes back into the stack, the quarter is returned, minimizing the number of carts that leave the store, Skinkis said.
“We don’t have to have a person outside chasing carts. They can be inside chasing customers,” she said.
While the company brought other employees over to assist on opening day, the store only has 17 employees for 12,000 square feet of sales space.
The Clovis ribbon-cutting marks the third Aldi opening in the Central Valley, behind Hanford and Porterville. It also marks 70 stores statewide, with the Clovis store being the furthest north for the time being.
Aldi is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week.