500 Million Bottles: The mystery of Trader Joe’s and 3-Buck Chuck

Despite the refusal of anyone at Trader Joe’s to participate in this Fortune article, Beth Kowitt has written a fascinating account of everybody’s favorite grocery-shopping experience:

Fun facts:

  • Store managers, “captains” in Trader Joe’s parlance (newly promoted captains are commanders; assistant store managers are first mates) can make in the low six figures, and full-time crew members can start in the $40,000 to $60,000 range (WHOA. Career change?)
  • Trader Joe’s biggest R&D expense is travel for product-finding missions around the globe.
  • To pick their next locales, employees look at demographics such as education level and readership of gourmet magazines.
  • Crew members aren’t told the margins on products, so placement decisions are made based not on profits but on what’s best for the shopper.

Curious about the Three-Buck Chuck? Watch this video of some pretty boring old guys talking about wine.

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1 Comment

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One response to “500 Million Bottles: The mystery of Trader Joe’s and 3-Buck Chuck

  1. Pingback: So What Do You Do Exactly? Beer Edition | rosiesaysblog

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