Trader Joe’s, a California-based grocery store that prides itself on providing specialty foods at an affordable cost, is scheduled to open at 8 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9.
Trader Joe’s is located off North Atherton Street at 243 Patriot Lane.
The new plaza surrounding Trader Joe’s has officially been named “Trader Joe’s Plaza,” according to Al Pringle, the senior vice president of commercial real estate for the Keystone Commercial Real Estate Group. The Keystone Group is responsible for leasing out the stores located within the plaza, he said.
Trader Joe’s supplies only a select number of products in its stores but stocks items produced under its own brand name whenever possible to reduce costs, Trader Joe’s Spokeswoman Alison Mochizuki said.
The company-produced items come with a “Trader Joe’s Label Promise,” which ensures the product contains no artificial flavors or colors, no MSG, no genetically modified ingredients and no added trans fat, Mochizuki said.
The stores further reduce costs by not charging retailers for space on its shelves. Most grocery stores charge fees for retailers to put products on shelves, thus increasing costs of the products, she said.
The store has been accepting employment applications since Oct. 2 and is still hiring, Mochizuki said.
Pringle said Trader Joe’s and Pier 1 Imports will be the only stores ready for business in the plaza by Nov. 9. He also said there are plans in place for a store to lease the space directly to the left of Trader Joe’s within the next 30 days but could not specify which store will be opening.
These three stores, once open for business, will account for roughly 32,500 square feet of the plaza, which is about half of the available 70,000 square feet, he said.
Elena Delgrecosaid she was not aware of the State College opening but was excited to hear about it.
Delgreco (freshman-political science) said her family frequently shopped at the Trader Joe’s in her home city of Pittsburgh because of the wide variety of organic foods offered.
She also said the opening in State College is fitting for the Penn State community.
“There are enough families and enough people here that eat healthy foods. I know I’ll go there,” Delgreco said.
Trader Joe’s is located within eyesight of one of its top competitors, Wegmans, 345 Colonnade Blvd. Trader Joe’s does not offer comments on the presence of competitors, and Wegmans wasn’t too concerned about the competition moving in down the road.
“There are so many other places where people can shop for food,” Wegmans’ Director of Media Relations Jo Natale said in a statement. “When a new retailer enters a market, we don’t change course. Instead, we focus on our customers and the things that are important to them: incredible service, the right selection of products and low prices.”
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