discovering a simpiler life

discovering a simpiler life

Monday, 13 January 2014

this simple life ~ Part 3 My top 17 reasons to shop at Aldi

One of my darling nephews has a bit of a silver spoon in his mouth and won't go into Aldi and will hide slouched down if his parents dare to take him in to the car park for fear of being seen.  For Christmas one year I got him an Aldi shopping token and wrapped all his presents in their plastic bags, I don't think he thought it was very funny. Hehehehe I obviously did.

Firstly, let me just say, this is not a sponsored post.  I am posting of my own free will and am unfortunately not receiving any money or free products off Aldi for this post. I am a self confessed Aldi lover and have been since it graced our town many years ago.  

You don't have to be Einstein to realise you can save some good money shopping there.  Here are my top 17 reasons to shop at Aldi apart from saving money.
  1. They have a green conscience  and proudly support environmental sustainability with a no bags given policy, you take or buy your own and they have in place a green action plan which includes being the only Australian supermarket to stock only Australian made and phosphate free laundry products and using environmentally friendly packaging.  
  2. It saves on brain power as there is only one or two choices of any one product and they are always in the same spot.
  3. They have a growing range of gluten free products without a hefty price tag.  
  4. They offer a double-back guarantee on most food items.  If a product isn't up to scratch, they'll replace it AND refund your money.
  5. The shopping trolleys are free and take a token or 1 or 2 dollar coins.  This also makes everyone take their trolley back to its rightful place.
  6. Aldi have won a host of awards for many of their products mainly their dairy and olive oils.  
  7. They have big aisles of fuss free shelves and not a multi-buy in sight.   
  8. They have consistent quality, in my opinion.
  9. They don't rob Peter to pay Paul and so have genuine low prices each week.
  10. Their growing Organic product range is great and at an affordable price.
  11. Aldi have a committment to supporting Australian suppliers.  One example is they have supported SPC Ardmona by making their entire range of 825g tinned fruit to Australian made.  There are other examples you can read about here,
  12. No artificial colours for the vast majority of products, except pet food and some non-food items.
  13. They have a product range of MSC certified labelled fish to support sustainably caught varieties.
  14. Aldi have a partnership with Planet Ark to recycle batteries.  They are the first supermarket in Australia to offer free recycling of batteries in every store.  Batteries are toxic monsters and need to be disposed off properly and not thrown in the bin.
  15. They have reduced their own energy consumption throughout existing and future stores by fitting them out with eco friendly lighting, refridgeration, air conditioning, heating and freezers.
  16. Its quick and easy to get out of! Their checkout operators are like speedy gonzales.
  17. Their carpark is big, free and in my experience a road rage free zone.
I read a great article by Jo at Down to earth mother about the eco buys from Aldi with a smile on my face.  They have a very good growing 'Just Organic' range that I add to my shopping and stockpile each week.  
Organic produce comes at a high price but I understand why.  What I do think now is I try my best to make my shopping dollars count.  When I can I buy as much Organic as we can afford.  I started by just switching to a couple of items each shopping trip where I could.  Below is an idea of what I've been buying on the organic front.
I've  struggled with the whole to go organic or not go organic guilt trip.  Give me another spoonful would you!  The answer for me, at this stage is this.  On one wage, I'm  incorporating organic into my shopping trolley as often as I can. Organic and Australian made is the bee's knees for me.  If I can't afford organic then the next best option for me is Australian made.  I don't compromise on eggs or chicken~they are always freerange and/or organic. If I can I get my eggs direct from a local farmer I'm happiest, until that special day when I will have my own girls clucking away in my yard.

What I have been trying to do is when I run out of something, say extra virgin olive oil, I will pay that bit more that week for the organic version or at the very least Australian made.   Slow and steady will win my race.  Knowledge is key, but you have to be realistic too if you are trying to be frugal and get the most from your shopping dollars.  Do what works best for you and your family, don't worry about anyone else as you really could go crazy worrying about it all.

Here are some price's for any of you non-Aldi shoppers to think about. Aldi prices
Vinegar 2 L $1.09 (product of Australia)
Organic butter  (made in New Zealand) $2.89
Freerange whole chicken 1.870 kilo $10.63 (product of Australia)
Organic pasta  $1.65 (made in Italy)
Organic tomato paste 140g $0.99  (made in Italy)
Organic diced Italian tomatoes  $0.99 (made in Italy)
Organic fair trade milk chocolate 100g $1.99 (made in Germany) 
Organic extra virgin olive oil (made in Australia!! Yay!!!) around $6 
Organic soy milk 1 Litre (made in Australia!! double Yay!!) $1.79
Organic natural yoghurt $5 per kilo (yep made in Australia)
so 5 out of 10 are Aussie made.

I have to admit to shopping at my local independant or one of the other big boys to do about 5% of our top up groceries and luxury items, but it's becoming more and more less frequent.  It's usually for cold meat like a hunk of ham or sliced freerange chicken breast as I don't like the cold meat of Aldi's nor do I like any supermarket chicken 'meat' as I hate to think of whats in it.  

So what are my favourite items from Aldi? Here is an idea.

  • dippits, wholegrain rice crackers, rice cakes, sao's and cruskits
  • all their nuts
  • tinned peaches and pineapple
  • gluten free almond crunch cereal
  • all of their organic range
  • their hommus is the best apart from yummi's but at half the price
  • greek honeyed yoghurt and squeezy yoghurts for lunchboxes
  • free range whole chicken
  • 1kg raw frozen prawns at $10 are a bargain
  • organic butter
  • bags of 5 or 6 avocados, bananas, truss tomatoes, bags of carrots, sweet potatoes, purple garlic and zucchini's
  • wholegrain wraps
  • face wash and moisturiser
  • glad wrap, foil, baking paper, garbage bags, freezer bags
  • toilet cleaner, vinegar, baby wipes

So tell me my dear readers, do you shop at Aldi? Or are you a duopoly big boy supermarket only shopper?

Ciao, Jan.


  1. I LOVE Aldi Jan, even a quick trip for bread and milk is an Aldi job in our house, if you don't make you own bread they have an amazing selection in the bread department too! The girls lived in their nappoes when they were babies and Isy still has their pull ups for night time. We love their shampoo and conditioner too. That's all i can think of that you didn't already cover off. I am reformed, i would never set foot in Aldi in the past, but once i did there was no looking back, been avid Aldi shoppers now for about 3 years & saving a fortune :)
    PS - i like to keep a couple of envirosax in my handbag or unexpected Aldi stops another great Aussie product

  2. You're a love Sez, thanks for adding those other great items. I used their nappies all the time too with great satisfaction!! Jan xxx

  3. I'm an aldi shopper, but it's 45 minute drive away so I try to only go every 3 or 4 weeks. I find if I shop there for a lot of the basics then I can supplement our food shop at the local organic store and farmers market. I also buy some organic items online in bulk. It is hard to find a balance when on a lower income that's for sure...

    1. It is isn't it Kristie. Great that you can even be bothered to make the journey, it's definitely worth it. Cheers, Jan x

  4. The prices for their organic products are great!

    1. They are aren't they Lorraine, it does make me wonder though why?! I might need to do some more reading....Jan x

  5. Hi Jan

    I would love to shop at Aldi as I have heard good things about them but sadly we don't have one here (in SA) - well certainly not in my little country town neck of the woods!

    I try to do most of my shopping at Foodland (locally owned SA franchise) but do have to venture in to WW for items that Foodland don't stock, sadly!

    1. You might have to plan a trip to Victoria and load up Judy! :D Jan x

  6. Great post Jan, one dear to my heart on all the front you mentioned. They support Aussie farmers, affordable organic range and they have progressive polices on many things; the environment, the first private company to introduce extended parental pay (before the government announced it) and seat for check out chicks!!.
    Aldi is our first stop for most of our shopping and although they don't have everything, they have a great deal of what we need/use. I love how they have made the supermarket game more competitive, but don't seem to have the same cut throat tactics as the duopoly ( I could be wrong).
    My only concern is the NZ products. This is not an Aldi concern, but a produce concern per say. NZ have a trade agreement with Chinba, which means we are getting NZ produce sold here, but it can be made from Chinese products, which as you are probably aware their are concerns over how Chinese produce is produced. I am all for supporting our NZ neighbours (although not at the expense of our own industries obviously), but am very weary of these 'backdoor' trade agreements.
    However, that is aside--Aldi rocks!!
    A great well thought out and researched piece--thanks for this!

  7. Thanks for adding those other points Robyn, it helps to be as informed as you can to all that's going on under our noses. I love that the 'ninja' checkout chicks get to sit down! Jan x

  8. Sorry it's a bit late, but THANKS for the link! As you know, I'm not shopping at ALDI these days, but that's mostly because I have sourced almost everything from beyond supermarkets. I do miss their organic tinned tomatoes though... so friggen cheap! ALDI has a really sound environmental policy in terms of the buildings, bags, returnable trolleys etc. There are three reasons I don't shop there anymore: because (I would have to check the exact figure) only around 50% of their products are sourced from Oz, all their F&V is packaged, and finally because it is a massive foreign-owned company.
    I have the same system of priorities when shopping, organic, then Australian made - both is, as you say, the bees knees!

  9. Better late than never Jo!! Thanks for your comment and more food for thought. Cheers, Jan x


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