Blog | (news) Aldi Offers Gluten-Free Produ . . .
(news) Aldi Offers Gluten-Free Products for a Limited Time
Elizabeth Barbone - May 07, 2014
Thanks to living gluten-free, I went on an adventure this morning! My big trip? Aldi's! Okay, so not a huge adventure but, still, an adventure nonetheless. As much of a grocery-store lover as I am, Aldi somehow escaped me. It's not that we don't have one close, we do. Two actually. But, I don't know, I never went.
And then they advertised gluten-free food. So I jumped in my car.
Here's what I found:
As you can see, they spent LOTS of space in their weekly flyer on gluten-free products. Or, as they call them “Live Gfree.” (Mini rant: gfree is my least favorite term for the gluten-free diet. Why? It says nothing! Gluten-free refers to products that are free of gluten. GFree? Not so much. End rant.)
After paying for my shopping cart (it cost .25 cents that's refunded when you return your cart), I walked into the store and was met with a HUGE gluten-free display.
Sorry the photos are a little washed out. The sun was out (I know. I can't believe it either.) and it made the photo a little hard to get. Pictured above are gluten-free snack bars, crackers, soft baked cookies, and a mixes.
Lots of gluten-free baking mixes!
Mac and cheese mix (left) and pasta (right)
They even sold Glutino pretzels for $3.59 a bag.
As I walked around the store, I noticed that some of their other items carried a gluten-free label, like this cereal:
That box? Cost $1.79!
Nestled among their regular gluten-full mixes were more gluten-free mixes.
It was nice to see them on the shelf with the "regular" products.
In the freezer section, I found gluten-free pancakes, ravioli, pancakes (yes!), frozen pizza, and even a "hot pocket" type product.
After quickly scanning the items, I slowed down and started to really look at them. I picked up a bag of pasta. It was a great price and made in Romania. Is it just me or do you not see many “Made in Romania” products everyday? Unless, you buy Sam Mills gluten-free pasta that is!
Like Trader Joe's, Aldi uses “copackers” for their products. What does this mean? It means that although products carry the Aldi name, they aren't manufactured by Aldi; they are manufactored for Aldi. So Aldi reaches out to, say, a company that makes gluten-free pasta and then, under contract, that company produces food that carries the Aldi name.
This happens all the time. Walk into your local grocery store and look at the “store brands”, most are produced under a copacker relationship.
Even though the gluten-free marketplace expanded greatly over the last few years, there still isn't a huge glut of companies making gluten-free food. This means when companies like Aldi, Trader Joe's, or your local grocery store offer gluten-free items, it can be fairly easy to guess who's making the food. Honestly, it's a fun game for me. I can look at an item and guess, “Ooop! I bet that's Sam Mills!” or "I think those cookies are Tate's!"
Lots of the Aldi's items are pretty easy to guess. So if you love, let's say, Enjoy Life's Soft Baked Cookies, I bet you'll like the Aldi LiveGFree brand. (cough)
This brings me to another exciting point: most of the products are “certified gluten-free”. Yay! I worried before I went to Aldi that all the products would carry a “may contain” warning. They don't. (*Note: I can only speak for the items I was able to look at in my local store. Some items, like the wraps, were out of stock.)
Isn't that a great description of the gluten-free diet?
The prices, as I'm sure you noticed from the flyer, are GREAT. Here's the downside:
It's a limited run. Boo!
When I asked Aldi on Twitter about the run, this was their reply:
So, if you have an Aldi near you, run, don't walk to the store ASAP.
Oh, and bring cash or a debit card. They don't take credit cards. At least my store didn't.