ALDI in Bel Air sets opening for Jan. 19

The Aegis

ALDI in Bel Air is planning to open its third store in Harford County, this one at 599 Baltimore Pike in the former Super Fresh store, on Thursday, Jan. 19.

To celebrate the opening, ALDI will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8:45 a.m., after which the first 100 shoppers in the store will receive a golden ticket, each containing ALDI gift cards of various amounts.

Regular store hours will be from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday.

With nearly 1,600 stores in 35 states, ALDI is known for quality grocery items at low prices.

Also as part of the grand opening, customers will be able to tour the store, sample ALDI brand products and enter an on-site sweepstakes for a chance to win a year's supply of ALDI produce. ALDI carries a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, including several organic produce items.

"We are pleased to bring our first store to Bel Air to help customers get high-quality products at everyday low prices," Jeff Baehr, Frederick division vice president for ALDI, said in a press release. "We challenge shoppers to switch from national brands to our high-quality exclusive brands and stretch their dollars without compromising quality. As important as price is, the only way to attract and keep shoppers is to have quality products."

Thanks to input from customers, the Bel Air store presents a new look, offering a modern and convenient shopping environment featuring more room for customers' favorite products, inviting colors, high ceilings, natural lighting and environmentally-friendly building materials, such as energy-saving refrigeration and LED lighting, Baehr said. The store is simple to navigate with easy-to-spot product signage and prominent product prices. Shoppers can say hello to fresh with expanded cooler sections, healthy tips in the produce section and "Dietitian's Picks" – healthy products picked by nutrition experts, making it easier for families to make smart choices.

In addition to the store's new look, ALDI will bring shoppers a wide range of premium groceries from which to choose, such as organic produce, USDA Choice beef, the liveGfree gluten-free product line and the SimplyNature line of products free from more than 125 artificial ingredients and preservatives. All exclusive brand food products are free of added MSG, certified synthetic colors and partially hydrogenated oils.

ALDI officials said they challenge customers to switch from national brands to ALDI brands and save on their grocery bill. ALDI stands behind its quality with a Double Guarantee: If for any reason a customer is not 100 percent satisfied with a food product, ALDI will gladly replace the product and refund the customer's money.

ALDI exemplifies efficiency by eliminating overhead costs through smart practices, such as a cart rental system, through which shoppers insert a quarter to release a cart and receive the quarter back upon the cart's return. Other cost-saving practices include a smaller store footprint, open carton displays and encouragement of customers to bring their own shopping bags.

Over the next several years, ALDI plans to add an average of 130 new stores each year, expanding the ability to bring grocery savings to more people every day.

As an employer of choice, ALDI said the company offers employees generous wages and benefits that are higher than the national average for the retail industry. Part-time staff averaging 25 hours per week receive full health insurance benefits and dental coverage and all ALDI employees are invited to participate in the 401(k) program.

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