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Belgium: Aldi launches new store concept with fresh market experience

Discount Retail Chain Aldi Belgium (German family owned) is launching a renewed store concept in Belgium, in which the fresh supply will be given an even more prominent place. The changing promotions also receive more attention: the retailer brings the logic of the folder to the shop floor.

Responding to customer needs

From now on, Aldi welcomes its shoppers at the entrance with a real fresh market. All fresh products are here together: fruit and vegetables, fresh meat, fresh fish and chilled convenience products such as prepackaged salads, fresh fruit juices and other prepared meals and drinks. It is the most striking innovation in the updated store concept that the discounter launched on Wednesday in Herenthout and Jodoigne.

The innovation fits in with the evolution that Aldi has started for several years: after all, the retailer is investing heavily in fresh products, for example by adding its own range of prepackaged meat in all stores and by expanding a range of fruit and vegetables in bulk. “People come to the store more often to buy fresh products. We therefore link our furnishing to the needs of our customers,” says sales director Koen Piessens. “In this way, the shopping cart can immediately be filled with what is at the top of the shopping list.”

Extend folder in store layout

We were given a tour of Herenthout, a spacious and well-arranged store of 1350 m². Shoppers will find the range of fruit and vegetables at the very front, with the fresh promotions playing a leading role. The wall cooler contains pre-packaged vegetables, salads and meals. Further on, five meters of pre-packaged meat, the fish furniture and the bake-off department follow. The cooling against the back wall contains, among other things, the party products, dairy and charcuterie.

In the center of the store, in the middle of every shopping aisle, Aldi surprises its shoppers with varying promotions. After all, on top of the 1600 fixed references, the retailer offers variety with a hundred in/out offers: these are the weekly 'specials', the seasonal themes and the promotions on Wednesday and Saturday. Aldi now presents these non-food offers in two courses: one for the Wednesday promotions and one for Saturday. “In this way, we extend the logic of the folder into the store layout.”

Thoroughly tested

Internally, Aldi speaks of the 'ANIKo 2.0' formula. In terms of look and feel, the concept builds on the makeover launched in 2018, but the layout of the store has been thoroughly changed. “We've moved just about everything.” The new interior was thoroughly and long-term tested in five stores across the country. With good results: from now on all new or renovated stores will therefore receive this fresh concept.

By the end of this year, the new store layout will already be on display in ten Aldi stores. Next year, the supermarket chain will further roll out the new store layout with fresh market experience in 36 stores, including five new stores.

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