Trader Joe's fans understand the heartache of finding out a beloved snack has been discontinued out of the blue. One day, you're shopping for a bowl of spicy hummus dip and chili lime tortilla chips without a care, unknowingly grabbing these fan favorites off the shelves for the last time. There are countless Instagram pages and TikTok accounts dedicated to sharing their favorite Trader Joe's finds and spreading the news when items are on the chopping block. Still, many shoppers are surprised when the items they enjoy are suddenly nowhere to be found, learning from an extra-friendly cashier that they won't be making a return. If only there were a way for shoppers to know their go-to snacks are being discontinued before it's too late. All you need to do is look for the signs.
A Reddit user shared a photo in the r/traderjoes subreddit, surprised to see "a sign letting customers know a product is going to be discontinued." The yellow, half-moon sign was positioned directly above Trader Joe's iconic hand-lettered product description that reads, "Soon 2 be discontinued," with adorable bee and flower details drawn on. Many users were happily surprised to see this signage, saying they wish their local store would be more straightforward about which items will soon go out of fashion. One user writes, "I've become a bit of a TJ's hoarder in fear that at any minute, my fav's will be gone!!"
A Reputation Of Discontinuing Fan Favorites
While some Reddit users claim that "endangered product" signs are regular additions to their local Trader Joe's decor, not all stores provide fans with this warning. There have been plenty of popular items that have completely vanished from Trader Joe's without any sign letting shoppers know to stock up before it's retired. One Reddit user responded to a thread asking for an official list of discontinued Trader Joe's products, saying, "The list ... would be longer than the current list of items they carry. It would be a fifty-five book set that rivals any set of encyclopedias you could ever find." While fans are understandably unhappy when their favorite snacks disappear, the company has made it quite clear why they choose to remove certain products.
In an episode of Trader Joe's official podcast "Inside Trader Joe's," host Matt Sloan shared that low sales are the number one reason why products are removed from inventory. Sloan states, "We just physically don't have room to carry things that aren't popular, as disappointing as that is to hear and experience" (per KTLA5). The rotating products are also part of Trader Joe's inherent charm. Shoppers enjoy discovering new, delicious treats. Unfortunately, for the store to offer a stream of new products, it must constantly be on the lookout for ones that haven't made enough revenue to become a staple.
Shoppers Honor Their Favorite Discontinued Items In The Funniest Ways
Over the years, Trader Joe's has earned a massive fanbase of dedicated shoppers who view the grocery store as more than just a place to grab fridge and pantry essentials. For many, hunting for the latest items is a lifestyle. When a fan's comfort snack is suddenly discontinued, they make it known that they are in mourning on their next grocery trip. Trader Joe's shoppers regularly post to TikTok to let others know about the latest discontinued snacks in the most creative ways. One TikTok user shared an "in-memoriam" style video featuring the infamous Sara McLaughlin song, "I Will Remember You," with images of discontinued snacks like the cinnamon bun spread, the jalapeno lime almond dip, and the honey butter potato chips.
Ironically, many Trader Joe's employees are in on the joke and mourn their favorite snacks along with shoppers. One Trader Joe's sign artist made Halloween decor in the style of gravestones, honoring items people cannot believe Trader Joe's has discontinued over the years. The clever signage displays the name of the retired snack, along with the date that Trader Joe's decided they would no longer carry it. TikTok users flooded the comments with their top choices for discontinued products that they believe are worthy of the snack graveyard.
Hope For Your Favorite Discontinued Item's Return
Whether you spot a "soon to be discontinued" sign on your favorite product or the Trader Joe's employee checking you out encourages you to grab a few more of that popular snack "just in case," not all hope is lost when an item can no longer be found. Many popular Trader Joe's items are seasonal, meaning that the snacks are around for a limited time, usually with flavors corresponding to a particular season, such as pumpkin for fall or peppermint for winter. The Trader Joe's website features a "What's New" section where you can find all the latest product drops, and you can double check to see if the store has brought back your most-loved seasonal snacks from years past. Many shoppers are pleasantly surprised to discover that the snacks they fell in love with last year made a return during their annual seasonal rotation.
For the best chance of your favorite Trader Joe's item's return, let the company know how much you enjoyed it and would continue to buy it. On Trader Joe's website is a unique option to provide "discontinued product feedback." The page acknowledges the sadness many shoppers feel when certain items are removed and offers a place for fans to plead their case. According to the feedback page, "[Trader Joe's takes] customer requests into account when ... [revisiting] old favorites."
Read the original article on Mashed.