GREENVILLE — The newly remodeled Aldi reopened to a large crowd in Greenville Tuesday morning. Shoppers were lined up along two sides of the building and clustered near the main entrance as well, while Aldi employees stood outside in the parking lot directing traffic.
“We couldn’t be more excited to be reopening in a town like Greenville that has been so good to us. We appreciate your patronage over the years, and invite you to check out our new, remodeled store,” Aldi director of Store Operations Ryan Harmon told the assembled shoppers just before the ceremonial ribbon was cut by Store Manager Karen Stockslager. “Karen and the rest of her team have done a very nice job getting ready, and we’re thrilled to be open today.”
The store was closed for five weeks while the major part of the remodeling took place. Major changes, according to Harmon, include a fifth aisle; an expanded line of fresh meat and produce items; a bigger selection of refrigerated items, including refrigerated produce; and a focus on energy-efficient and recyclable building materials and LED lighting.
Following the ribbon-cutting ceremony, customers were given free cloth shopping bags and allowed to begin shopping. Free samples of food and snack items were available near the entrance. The new store will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Sunday.
“I love the new look,” store manager Karen Stockslager said of the remodeled store. “It feels like a real grocery store. We have that sparkle now that a lof of the bigger stores have.”
Stockslager has managed the Greenville store since it originally opened, and has been with Aldi for over 25 years.
“I came with the building,” Stockslager said. “I’ve seen a lot of changes over the years, all of them good. This is our third remodel, and it’s the biggest one.”
Both Harmon and Stockslager were surprised by the huge turnout for the reopening.
“I didn’t expect to see quite this big a crowd,” Stockslager said, while Harmon noted it was the biggest opening he’d seen.
“And I’ve done a lot of them,” Harmon said.
Renovations at the Greenville store are part of Aldi’s $1.6 billion plan to enhance more than 1,300 stores nationwide by 2020, according to a press statement issued earlier this year. They also plan to open over 600 new stores by 2018, expanding into new markets such as southern California. The retailer currently operates in 35 states.
New stores will feature products free from most artificial ingredients and preservatives, as well as a line of meats free from antibiotics, added hormones and animal by-products. Artificial ingredients such as MSG, synthetic colors and partially hydrogenated oils have also been eliminated from all Aldi exclusive-brand foods.
The Greenville store plans to hire approximately three additional employees to staff the location now that renovations are complete. Those wishing to apply can attend a hiring event Monday, October 23 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Greenville store.