Is Aldi Cutting Back on its Aldi Finds?

Every week, Aldi rolls out a new crop of limited-run products across its stores worldwide, and for any serious Aldi shopper, it’s a bit like Christmas. You never know what Aldi is going to sell, and part of the fun is seeing just what the store has in store next.

This week, here in the United States, we opened up the latest Aldi ad and immediately noticed something was amiss. It was … short.

The Aldi US Ad for the week of April 19, 2020. It’s usually longer than this.

I counted 21 or so items (not including variations) and just two pages. For comparison, the current print ad for the week of April 12, 2020, has around 38 items across three pages, which is closer to what we expect.

Is this the start of a temporary trend?

I suspect so, and it probably has to do with demand.

On one end, staple grocery products are in short supply right now. Essentials like milk, eggs, and, yes, toilet paper are harder to find than they used to be.

On the other end, limited-buy items like Aldi Finds — especially non-food items — are not as in demand. Consumers have less time to linger in stores and possibly less money to work with, so they’re less likely to loiter with the non-core items than before. In fact, with the new in-store limitations, they may not be able to browse as easily even if they wanted to. It’s not just Aldi, either: non-food retail in general has declined sharply in the last few weeks.

If you’re Aldi and you put those two factors together, the end result is inescapable: you shift your resources toward the demand. That means putting more truck space, more storage space, and more inventory space toward the things people are buying, and less toward the things they aren’t.

I still think we’ll see Aldi Finds on shelves. But I suspect we’ll see fewer of them, at least for a time.

About Joshua

Joshua is the Editor-in-Chief of Aldi Reviewer. He is also a writer and novelist. You can learn more about him at www.joshuaajohnston.com.

5 Comments

  1. I think you’re right. I was Aldi yesterday and the center aisle was fully stocked. I’ve never seen that at an Aldi on a Wednesday afternoon. And on a side note, I’ve stopped buying their sliced cheeses altogether because of that new packaging.

    • I agree, with sliced cheese you have to put into a zip-lock bag, which add a to cost, buying name brands on sale for quality and close to same cost. The center aisles are pretty much empty by me also.

  2. I’ve heard bad comments about the basic sliced cheese packaging. I haven’t bought any in a long time so I can’t say. However, the more premium sliced cheeses, such as the Gouda, seems to be in the good old ziplock type packaging and it’s delicious.

    I think the lack of Aldi finds has to do with the virus. I’ve also seen the “isle of shame” well stocked, while other areas of the store have never been more empty. In fact, it’s basically a flip flop on inventory between the two sections.
    Aldi shouldn’t be stocking and advertising the tempting toys. Normally a retailer wants as many people in the store as possible. Now the rules are the opposite. Many retailers are being called out for advertising “non essential” items. I admit that I am going to look at the Finds ad even though I don’t really need anything.
    There are two separate distribution systems:
    1) the commercial (restaurants and business)
    2) the retail system. (Aldi, Walmart….)
    More people are now eating and using toilets at home and not at work, schools or restaurants. The burden has been placed on retail system, while commercial has dropped. The two systems are independent of each other. Even though there’s tons of commercial stock, it is difficult to move that inventory to retail distribution chains. Even if it can be done, the commercial packaging and products are not suitable for retail sale. All grocers are having trouble meeting demand for everyday items.
    If this is the cause of the decrease in Aldi Finds, then Aldi is doing the responsible thing and I expect it will go back to normal in a month or so. The Aldi Finds will set in the warehouse for now. After the demand for staples is over, it will be like Christmas day in the Isle of Shame.

  3. Thank you for article and the great comments. I had wondered about the same thing, so it’s nice to know I’m not just imagining things.

  4. As a follow-up to the cheese packaging, yesterday at my store, the standard basic sliced cheese for $1.79 was in the old style ziplock type package.

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