Trader Joe’s

TraderJoesTrader Joe’s is a privately held grocery chain, ranked 27th in America, with 353 stores, in 27 States, and Washington, D.C.

In 1958, founder Joe Coulombe managed the new Pronto Markets chain in California, which later becomes Trader Joe’s. Joe Coulombe developed the idea of the Trader Joe South Seas motif while on vacation in the Caribbean. He liked the idea of bringing home new and unique items that were not available in the local markets, at that time. In the beginning, some of the stores offered meats provided by butchers who leased space in the stores, as well as other fresh picked fruits and vegetables from local producers.

The first Trader Joe’s store debuted in South Pasadena, California in 1967. 12 years later, it was bought out by the Albrecht family. Joe Coulombe remained active within the company as a counselor until 1988, until he was succeeded by longtime friend and colleague John V. Shields.

Trader Joe’s starts to really take off at this time, and reaches about $150 million in sales in 1989. Steady growth compels the executives at Trader Joe’s to expand beyond California, into Arizona, pushing their number of stores to 59 in 1989.

By 1994, Trader Joe’s is consistently reaching $600 million in US sales annually, and opens stores in Seattle and Oregon. With the addition of the Trader Joe’s web site in 1996, they also open up more stores on the East Coast, in Boston, Washington, D.C., and New York. Along with this move, they also expand their nonfood specialty business.

Having outgrown their present location, Trader Joe’s decides to move the company headquarters to Monrovia, California. They also made the move away from genetically modified ingredients from its private-label products; and decided to exclude products from China amidst claims that organic food from this country contained less than true organic ingredients.

By 2009, Trader Joe’s had grown to a total of 353 stores, in 27 States, including Washington, D.C., with sales of over $8 billion US.

Headquarters: Monrovia, California
No. of Stores: 353 (2010)
No. of Employees: 7,488 (2001)
Geography: 353 stores, in 27 States, including Washington, D.C.
Special Services: gourmet foods,  organic foods, vegetarian food,  unusual frozen foods,  imported foods, domestic and imported wine and beer, and staples like bread, cereal, eggs, dairy, coffee and produce. Non-food items include personal hygiene products, household cleaners, vitamins, pet food, plants, and flowers.

Trader Joe’s promises that anything with a “Trader Joe’s” logo contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, no MSG or trans fats, and is sourced from non-genetically modified ingredients.

Trader Jose’s (Mexican food), Trader Ming’s (Chinese food), and Baker Josef’s (flour and bagels).

By selling almost all of its products under its own label, Trader Joe’s “skips the middle man” and buys directly from both local and international small-time vendors.


  1. Billie Black November 20, 2017 at 9:07 pm - Reply

    Want to purchase your Butternut Sqquash Parmigiana with Amaretti Crunch”
    When will it be available and can I order 6 or so over the internet?

  2. Steve September 27, 2017 at 10:08 am - Reply

    We are long time shoppers at T.J’s, but we have noticed a disturbing trend that some good selling items have been discontinued. Some of these are T.J’s plant based, unscented laundry powder and whole wheat Indian flat bread along with some other staple items.
    Hopefully the decision not to carry these items is not financially (profit) motivated because sadly it forces those seeking products under your roof to go elsewhere.

  3. Gen Hall September 25, 2017 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    You recently discontinued TJ Brown Rice Bread. It is such a great bread for us gluten free types I always toasted it to make it less moist.
    I do wish you would bring it back.

  4. Anne-Marie Prichard August 23, 2017 at 3:40 pm - Reply

    The only bread I have bought in Trader Joe’s stores in Palm Desert and La Quinta, CA for the past 20 years is PAIN RUSTIQUE. It is the closest to French bread in your stock assortment (I was born and raised in France) but it is no longer available because of low sales. Surprising because it is the best of your ” French” breads to eat with cheese. I would like to know the name of the distributor in this area in case they sell to other stores.

  5. Leanell Tudor March 14, 2017 at 11:55 pm - Reply

    Do you carry Triple Ginger Snaps? They are the best I have ever tasted!!

  6. barbara jimenez February 8, 2017 at 10:26 pm - Reply

    do you have pistachio jam

  7. Mary Peterson January 23, 2017 at 5:42 pm - Reply

    We are looking for oysters in a jar. Do you carry them.
    Thank you for answering

  8. Sandy July 13, 2016 at 2:43 pm - Reply

    Any stores in the Hampton area of Suffolk County, NY?

  9. Anna Tringali June 11, 2016 at 3:05 pm - Reply

    please bring back the Italian Turkey Meatloaf, my family and I love it. I shop at the Monterey store (93940) and the Pacific Grove store (93950). I always recommend this product to all trader joes shoppers

  10. Alice September 22, 2015 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    I love the reusable TJ’s shopping bags. In particular the blue ones with the surfboards and the ocean. However I haven’t seen any with that pattern since I began looking to buy a new one. They have since been replaced with these horrible HOT (not in a good way) RED Arizona bags. Living in Phoenix in the summer and looking at the red bag makes me feel psychologically hotter. (Also not in a good way)
    Recently I was shopping in your store and spotted a surfboard bag in a customers cart. I offered to buy it from him. I was prepared to offer him much more than he paid for it. He refused stating he had to look for that bag high and low and obviously felt the same way about the bag as I do.

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Bring back the surfboard bags Arizona

  11. Ron September 6, 2015 at 5:58 pm - Reply

    Trader Joe Management – Recently we relocated from California to Colorado and for the past thirty years or so we have always shopped at one of your stores.Trader Joe stores are becoming very popular in Colorado and you may want to check out the new development called the ‘ Promenade ‘ located in Castle Rock, CO off of Meadows Parkway and the I25. The developer has just started construction of this multi million dollar project.

  12. janice coleman June 13, 2015 at 1:15 pm - Reply

    You discontued the low fat ginger “Catscookies for people”

  13. Danny Page Pulley April 4, 2015 at 9:21 pm - Reply

    Wow thank god that was an easy math question. Anyway I LOVE YOU TRADER JOES! However you have recently broken my heart. You have discontinued the divine shrimp louie salad that was my favorite. Please, please, please, consider bringing it back. I have eaten that salad every night with an avocado, soy sauce, and that fabulous pomegranate vinegar as a dressing…wait I’m not done…for the past 6 years!!! Except of course when I was in Peru, Bali, and Virginia which amounts to about 30 days which is also easy math. For 5 years and 11 months I have NEVER tired of my beloved shrimp salad. There are very few things I can eat with my diet restrictions and that was the perfect meal. You must thing I am a nut but I am actually a pretty cool woman who dances and teaches school and rescues animals and fights for humanity. If you could bring my salad back I will go on a campaign to get more people to buy it. I will give you my first born chinchilla. I will volunteer to work at your store for free once a month. Perhaps you could just have it at the Hollywood store or the Studio City location. I love everything about your store; the Caribbean vibe, the unique and friendly Hawaiian shirted employees the, the murals, the plethora of flowers, the assortment of exotic foods and the new items that show up daily. If you could only just bring back one glimpse of the past, the old, the memories, MY SHRIMP LOUIE SALAD, I would be forever most eternally grateful to you. Thanks you for making the world a better place. Ineluctably Yours, Danny Page Pulley

  14. Sue February 22, 2015 at 7:16 pm - Reply

    Are you ever going to open store in the villages, fl. 120000 people and growing like crazy. It is located in Sumter county. The fastest growing county in the US.

  15. Tim Gunter January 19, 2015 at 1:38 pm - Reply

    My wife is addicted to Trader Joe’s. Why won’t you come to Capitol Hill? Great store!

  16. Dianne Freeman January 19, 2015 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    Can Trader Joe’s gift cards be used at any JTs in US?

  17. Peggy January 19, 2015 at 1:25 pm - Reply

    Are you ever going to open a store in Coral Springs? Boca is too far for us to go!

  18. Kathy December 8, 2014 at 2:06 pm - Reply

    Looking for a sweeten milk substitute called Mimic crème. Do you carry it

  19. Connie Batchelder December 4, 2014 at 6:41 pm - Reply

    Why do you no longer carry the chocolate cake mix in the California stores in the San Francisco Bay area? They were the best cake mix I had found. Better than I could make.

  20. jody September 30, 2014 at 6:42 pm - Reply

    I started going to Trader Joe’s in Montery Cal. My daughter lived there for one and a half years. I live in Utah County and would love to shop at your store but I will not drive to S.L.C. Please bring one of your stores to my area ( south utah county), I have talked to many people here and they all say they love your store but driving 40-50 miles is just to far to go.

  21. Mindy Bailey September 23, 2014 at 12:09 am - Reply

    I just found out today that you have discontinued the biscotti with the choc bottom because of supposedly slow sale. I am really upset about that.

    Could you please tell me if there is somewhere I could buy them.

    Thank you

  22. Mark September 17, 2014 at 12:48 am - Reply

    What are the posibilities of bringing tho old sweet tea back? The new one just isn’t the same as the one that we all love!

  23. Karen Gross September 11, 2014 at 12:26 pm - Reply

    I really LOVE Trader Joe’s (it’s my favorite food store) – my ONLY issue is that toooo many foods are loaded with salt.

    You don’t need salt to have tasty food and salt isn’t good for you. There are too many things I would like to buy, but can’t because of the excessive amounts of salt.

    HELP! PLEASE reduce the salt!!! Then I can buy MORE!

  24. Jean Blum September 3, 2014 at 9:33 pm - Reply

    Yea McKinney! Can’t wait! Grew up in SOUTH PASADENA!

  25. mgR August 31, 2014 at 11:03 am - Reply

    I can afford to eat again!

  26. Gerry Blackwell July 24, 2014 at 1:30 pm - Reply

    Cookies, Oreo orange

  27. Barbara Dieckmann June 30, 2014 at 1:52 pm - Reply

    How about a store in Payson, Arizona, I would be your biggest customer as I miss the store and have to drive all the way to Phoenix/Scottsdale to purchase my products.

  28. Barbara Dieckmann June 30, 2014 at 1:50 pm - Reply

    Do you have Epsom Salt in your Store on 20th and Camelback??? Thanks, B.

  29. Adele Carr April 4, 2014 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    I would like to know if you have considered a third store in Albuquerque- the recently vacated Albertson’s on Central at Tramway would have great parking and would be very desirable for the many residents of NE Albq and those of us in the east mountains!!

  30. Sandra Long November 11, 2013 at 11:11 am - Reply

    I’d like to ask about your Virgin Olive Oil because of this report. Whole Foods is guilty of selling bad olive oil.

  31. Clinton Harris October 28, 2013 at 4:58 am - Reply

    Why the big secret of where the stores are and what is for sale?

  32. Nancy French October 22, 2013 at 9:15 pm - Reply

    Love your powder Chai tea but been having a hard time finding it in my local store,can you tell my why? Can I order it on line?
    Thank you

  33. Matilda Marten June 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm - Reply

    Can you order the Lundberg Rice Chips into the Store in Bend, Oregon? I feel these would be a asset to the other fine foods you carry and they are wheat and Gluten free.

  34. joel matttiswiss March 27, 2013 at 2:49 pm - Reply

    Hello Trader joes, We are wondering if you have tried this great ice cream named *Macapuno Ube* this is a coconut Sweet Purple Yam ice cream. here is the website . ( would you try some and think about bringing it in to your store.? Great Bright Purple color. Thank you.

  35. Betty Sterner August 24, 2012 at 12:07 pm - Reply

    What salt free or low salt products do carry?

  36. helen April 18, 2012 at 8:53 am - Reply

    looking to see if you carry meat marinate sauces

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