The Unofficial Trader Joe's Mascot You Probably Didn't Know About

Trader Joe's might be famous for its Everything But the Bagel Seasoning and its Cauliflower Gnocchi, but what isn't known by many is the identity of the unofficial mascot. Chances are, you've seen it before, but haven't paid it too much attention as you were stalking away to find your Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups.

Perhaps while reading this, you're already speculating over what this mystery figure could be. Could it be Trader Joe, the grocery store's founder and its namesake (via Eat This, Not That)? Or maybe it's some beloved product of the supermarket chain, like the iconic Scandinavian Swimmers? Surely, it would be an adorable and fitting mascot for the store.

It may disappoint you that none of these guesses are correct. So, it might surprise you that the unofficial mascot of Trader Joe's is none other than... a lobster? According to Delish, you can find a plastic lobster at every location.

How did the lobster end up as Trader Joe's unofficial mascot?

As we know, Trader Joe's is nautical-themed, with its walls often painted with ocean waves and a brass bell at every cash register. This was inspired by a book that the founder, Joe Coulombe, read called "White Shadows in the South Seas" as well as a jungle-themed ride at Disneyland, according to Winsight Grocery Business. He then decided to give the whole store an "island-like" vibe. This is evident with all managers at the chain being referred to as "captains" and other staff members being called the "crew." Furthermore, both don Hawaiian shirts (via The Kitchn).

According to a news article by Today, in 1976, one location had used a plastic lobster decoration to go along with the "ship-like" theme present at the supermarket. Now, decades later, every Trader Joe's has a lobster hanging out in the store somewhere — try to find it if you can!