Why Reddit Is Comparing Aldi To An Alternate Universe

People have said a lot of things about the supermarket chain Aldi over the years. Many people don't realize that it's been gracing the United States since 1976. In some states, it's a relatively new feature to their grocery shopping experience. While the chain was started by the Albrecht brothers in Germany in 1946, it now has a worldwide presence in over 20 countries (via The Conversation).

In Australia, the Aldi slogan is "Good Different" because they realized that, compared to other grocery stores, they were unusual in the way they operated. They wanted to embrace those differences.

"We are proud of our differences and we stand by them wholeheartedly," said CEO of Aldi Australia, Tom Daunt (via Inside FMCG). No matter whether they are in Australia, somewhere in Europe, or in the United States, Aldi stores have many similarities.

However, it's because of its differences that some new customers are reluctant to shop there. One person asked the Reddit community, "Did anyone feel stepping into an Aldi felt like stepping into an alternative universe because of the Aldi off-brand foods?" 

The Twilight Zone of grocery store experiences

When you go inside an Aldi, you'll notice many items look very familiar but then you'll notice the different names or the slightly different design of the packaging. You'll rarely see name brands at Aldi with over 90% of products sporting a private label (via Taste of Home). So, it's understandable that someone might refer to the grocery chain as an alternate universe. One person responded, "It was a little surreal at first. But everything either tastes the same or better than the name brands." 

Another said, "Seriously, what helps make it an alternate universe is the store brand packaging done up so closely to the national brand." They speculated that this might bring up legal concerns. Another Reddit user suggested that some of the brands that look so familiar to your well-known items are possibly manufactured by those same big brand companies and placed in slightly different packaging and with different names.

The truth behind the Aldi branded products

While Aldi stores look similar to one another the world over, and offer great discounts and some very interesting finds, the way each country deals with the products that look so familiar differs. 

In the UK, the chain was sued in 2019 for introducing a product that appeared to be a replica of a Charlotte Tilbury make-up item. However, in Australia, shoppers and factory workers have confirmed that some of the premium products they're packaging go in one container for one company and another for the Aldi brand but it's the same product.

In America, Aldi has a test kitchen, and believes that its stores are good enough to be part of someone's special wedding day! They recently held a competition for a couple to marry at Aldi. That's not something your average grocery store would do. Perhaps it is an alternate universe but it's a good alternate universe.