Aldi Nord in Poland has introduced a dedicated bio assortment in its fruit & vegetable departments. The concept labelled 'Jestem Bio - Jedz mnie' ('I am Bio - Eat me') includes around ten products merchandised on a mesh wire table supported by in-store signage: 'Strefa Zdrowia' ('Health Zone') and 'Strefa Bio' ('Bio Zone'). Most of the items show crossed-out prices highlighting a discount of 20-50%.
Over the past few months, Aldi has been significantly increasing its fruit and vegetable range, reaching an assortment count of more than 110 items from an initial base of around 80, thereby with a range comparable to that of market leaders Biedronka and Lidl. The chilled shelf currently features more than ten seasonal products, including several kinds of mushrooms, plums and apricots.
'W ALDI niczego nie robimy połowicznie.' ('At Aldi we do not act half-heartedly.') This is the motto being used by Aldi as it begins the relaunch of its fruit and vegetable image catalogue. Following the decision to revive its Polish branch, the retailer is now ploughing full steam ahead. Assortment extensions of more than 50% have so far been seen mainly for FMCG items. No matter how notable this accomplishment, Biedronka and Lidl still lead the field. However, catching up with channel peers in the fruit and vegetable aisle, plus closing the gap for organic and seasonal produce is a strong warning signal for all other players.
Aldi has been almost hiding its high-quality product proposition from its customers. Minimal marketing, German-language product packaging and modest to absent in-store signage prevented it in the past from building its market image, in an environment where Biedronka and Lidl were vying with one another using attention-grabbing marketing campaigns.
But standing behind this meek image sits 32 different quality labels and certificates, all hidden on the retailer's webpage. Likewise hidden on Aldi's Polish internet site is the 'Strefa Zdrowia' ('Health Zone'), divided into 'Strefa Fit' ('Fit Zone'), 'Strefa Bio' ('Organic Zone') and 'Bez Laktozy' ('Lactose-Free'). Although these assortments are not yet fully visible in-store, they already make up around 50 products. And Aldi is undoubtedly expanding these ranges. With stepped-up marketing communication the ugly duckling is growing and maturing.