West Seattle Trader Joe’s: Scenes from opening day

The long-awaited West Seattle Trader Joe’s at 4545 Fauntleroy Way SW opens at 8 am. Mark says he got there at 4:30 am to be the first person in line. As of about quarter till 7, when we photographed him in the golden glow of the rising sun, Mark was the only person in line. He tells us first thing he’s buying is a case of the famous TJ’s wine, known by its nickname “Two-Buck Chuck.” More coverage to come – we’ll be adding to this story through the day.

7:59 AM: By the time the doors were about to open, Mark had been joined by about two dozen others:

8:12 AM: Our crew tells us the store actually opened a few minutes early. Here’s the ceremonial lei-cutting:

So, no traffic jam at this hour. We’ll check back later.

10:14 AM UPDATE: Thanks for sharing first-hand reports in the comment section! We also got a mural photo, shared via Twitter by Jose:

11:07 AM UPDATE: Three hours into Day 1, we drove back by to check traffic/parking. In a word: Busy. Here’s the view looking south down 39th SW – just west of the store (and on the left of our photo, you’ll see the entrance/exit to TJ’s roof parking) – this was taken before 11 am, so West Seattle Bowl wasn’t even open yet:

4:53 PM UPDATE: Drove by within the past hour. Still busy. Remember that if it looks like there’s no parking in the lot that faces Fauntleroy, turn right at “The Hole” and try the upstairs parking, entrance on the right (east) side of 39th SW.

11:41 PM NOTE: In the final hours of the store’s first day, business was really booming. We walked through around 7:30 and noticed long checkout lines; after we tweeted a mention of that, @juyeda – also in the store – tweeted this photo. And we forgot to mention one thing – this store has just officially applied for its license to sell liquor when privatization takes full effect June 1st.

91 Replies to "West Seattle Trader Joe's: Scenes from opening day"

  • hmmmm April 13, 2012 (7:45 am)

    I’ll refrain comment on this photo and add I’ll just shop at the Burien location for a bit (all be it only 11 miles away)

  • Jiggers April 13, 2012 (8:06 am)

    Maybe I should panhandle outside for cash.

  • Jtk April 13, 2012 (8:14 am)

    YAY!!!! It’f Finally HERE :) YAY!!!!!!!

  • Andrew April 13, 2012 (8:17 am)

    Welcome to the neighborhood ! I want to give them props for donating to the Food Bank. Thank you TJ!

  • wseattlegal April 13, 2012 (8:18 am)

    Hooray! I can’t wait to check it out this weekend! I’d love to see some more pictures though of the inside!

  • lulu April 13, 2012 (8:20 am)

    LOL @ Mark! My boyfriend and I jokingly said we would “camp out” in front of TJ”s before the opening. Unfortunately, we both have to work today. Love that someone else did it though!!!

  • SuperAwesome April 13, 2012 (8:23 am)

    You gotta admire his commitment. So excited to visit the new TJs!

  • Neighbor April 13, 2012 (8:42 am)

    Just a note from the farm workers, one of whom was just 17, who have died picking the grapes for TJ’s Two Buck wine…Please remember us as you pour.


  • Mark32 April 13, 2012 (8:55 am)

    Trader Joes will be the only non union grocery store in West Seattle.

  • JD April 13, 2012 (8:56 am)

    Neighbor – I’ll be sure to try and remember that as I enjoy a nice bottle of wine, but undoubtedly won’t. Nice try attempting to guilt us into not shopping at this store. YAY FOR TJ’s!

  • LG April 13, 2012 (9:05 am)

    Looked up the link left by Neighbor – the incident was from 2008 – tried to google an update but did not find one. Did discover that TJ’s recently signed a fair food agreement in Florida with workers there.

  • angel April 13, 2012 (9:06 am)

    Like TJ’s but don’t think 3 buck chuck is any good.

  • Wessider April 13, 2012 (9:21 am)

    Just drove to the Junction and parked to go to Great Harvest for some bread…and low and behold! An empty bottle of Charles Shaw Merlot in an abandoned shopping cart in the parking lot. Someone is efficient! LOL

  • Bonnie April 13, 2012 (9:22 am)

    I went and it wasn’t too bad. Found a parking spot in their lot. Busy inside. Happy to be one of the first 30 customers in the door. My daughter was happy to get a lei.

  • valvashon April 13, 2012 (9:27 am)

    Anybody who waits 4 1/2 hours in the middle of the night to buy a case of Two-Buck Chuck needs to have their head examined. Two-Buck Chuck is barely vinegar, much less wine. If you are new to the TJ’s experience (and I suspect many West Seattleites are) avoid this swill at all costs. Enjoy a bottle of real wine instead of 12 bottles of nasty headache juice.

  • skeeter April 13, 2012 (9:28 am)

    I like the Shiraz for $2.49. Well, it’s 2.49 in Burien. Same price in West Seattle?

  • odroku April 13, 2012 (9:29 am)

    So, wait, ‘angel’ doesn’t like 3 Buck Chuck, but has the bottle finished and abandoned by 9:21 a.m.?

    Am I confused? Party in the junction!

  • cheep! April 13, 2012 (9:44 am)

    Just got back! It’s busy inside but not mobbed (not yet anyway)… a very pleasant neighborhood shopping experience!

  • shockguy April 13, 2012 (9:56 am)

    @ Mark32… thank goodness!

  • Bonnie April 13, 2012 (9:57 am)

    Prices are the same in West Seattle as Burien.

  • Marley April 13, 2012 (10:08 am)

    I was totally going to go and try and beat the guy at 4:30 am but responsiblity got the better of me and I ended up at work instead…oh well. I figure the groceries will still be there after work. I’m getting so old and boring at 26.

  • wundrgrrrl April 13, 2012 (10:09 am)

    I went at about 8:45 this morning and it was BUZZING! Steel drum one-man band, lei’s, samples, and a free TJ shopping bag. Took me about an hour to wander through ooo’ing and aaaah’ing… wishing I hadn’t done any grocery shopping earlier in the week and doubly wishing my freezer was larger!

    I love this place and have found my new “as close to perfect as it gets” grocery store!

    Welcome to West Seattle TJ’s!

  • Westseattleperson April 13, 2012 (10:25 am)

    Not too crowded at all. There’s a guy crafting the coolest balloon animals I’ve ever seen. Got to the check out stand at about 9:45. No line!

  • kate April 13, 2012 (10:30 am)

    Went for the first time around 8:15AM and it was hopping! Parking lots were full, but found a spot right away. The staff was super nice and the vibe in the store was great. Tons of people in the store and the lines at the register were really efficient! I didn’t have any issues pulling out of the parking lot, either, and it was morning rush hour traffic. A+++ shopping experience! Way to go West Seattle Trader Joe’s!

  • Noelle April 13, 2012 (10:32 am)

    Happy Friday the 13th indeed! Wow! The only store missing from West Seattle now is a WHOLE FOODS! I also miss having a big fabric store.

  • Brian April 13, 2012 (10:38 am)

    Darn, now I have to figure out what to do with all the money I will save shopping at TJ instead of W.Sea Thriftway.

  • Jiggers April 13, 2012 (10:38 am)

    It is going to get crazy this afternoon and tomorrow for sure. And everyone is staying away til later.

    • WSB April 13, 2012 (11:07 am)

      Jiggers – it’s actually getting busy now. We’re surveying traffic a few times throughout the day and I’m about to add an update. – TR

  • angel April 13, 2012 (10:45 am)

    odruku & wessider “burp!” :) Cheers
    I’ll have to try the shiraz, skeeter.

  • Cindertang April 13, 2012 (10:56 am)

    Finally a store my family can afford to shop at in west Seattle. A ray of sun shine to light up our lives

  • Cranky Westie April 13, 2012 (11:13 am)

    Sweet Cheeses in Heaven and all the local dialing area thereof! All my hopes and dreams will now be realized! I am paralyzed with delight at my new consumer shrine wherein I shall have all that my life has sorely missed provided to me! Everything will be fine now West Seattle! The coyotes will be fed and I can leave my laundry room where I have been eating only dryer lint and Febreze since late March. All my rancor and distemper will melt away into a fragrant puddle of sweet smelling Trader Joes Phad Thai flavored Kashi Breakfast Bars! All the ticked offed-ness of the past several decades (including that snowstorm that was Nickels pre-bearded fault and that earthquake that Paul Schell brought on) shall be forgotten in a Two Buck Chuck binge related haze….AH bliss…Trader Joes has opened! And right where I bought that crappy Chrysler PT Cruiser – the one where the G-Darn defroster didn’t work. Nuts. That nirvana didn’t last long. Careful what you wish for West Seattle.

  • miws April 13, 2012 (11:37 am)

    Where’s Diane?!? ;-)



  • Jan Jarrell April 13, 2012 (11:41 am)

    Am SO overjoyed at this newest addition to West Seattle! Welcome, TJ’s!! I’ll be visiting often. Wonderful foods at great prices!


  • Kestrel April 13, 2012 (11:53 am)

    Ode to Trader Joe’s

    At one-third the price of others, your Cambozola Cheese
    Is most exceptional, and aimed to please.
    Your Spicy Shrimp Bao with Thai Basil are quite delish—
    To have you in our neighborhood is what we wish!

    Grana Pardano Parmesan sprinkled over Lobster Ravioli
    ‘Tis heaven, and far above those other stores so lowly.
    Bulgarian Eggplant Garlic Spread with Fefferoni Peppers, oh my!
    We’re flocking to your store from Delridge, Admiral, and Alki.

    At night we dream of your Dark Chocolate Pistachio Toffee…
    Now it’s here in the Junction with our morning coffee.
    For these reasons and many more, we offer this little ode:
    Yes, oh yes, at last West Seattle got Trader Joe’d!

  • Al April 13, 2012 (12:01 pm)

    Bike racks anywhere…? TJs promised bike parking as well…anyone know? I’ll have to ride by on my way home and check it out.

  • Cindertang April 13, 2012 (12:02 pm)

    Hey this is where my wife and I bought our van,

  • 2 Much Whine April 13, 2012 (12:06 pm)

    Crowds were not bad, aisles are wide, all the registers were open. More people than probably typical but found parking quickly and it wasn’t the shopaggedon people were expecting.

    • WSB April 13, 2012 (12:08 pm)

      Cars are backing up around the corner on the little stub of 38th – just went by en route to something else.

  • JanS April 13, 2012 (12:06 pm)

    Mike..Diane is spending the day at TJ’s…she doesn’t have time to post on here :D

  • cwit April 13, 2012 (12:11 pm)

    Cranky Westie – I’d be cranky if I owned a PT Cruiser, too! ;)

  • cj April 13, 2012 (12:30 pm)

    Very excited for this but not looking forward to fighting traffic around it after work today. We need a bus stop closer to Trader Joes!

  • S April 13, 2012 (12:34 pm)

    I bet West Seattle Bowl is going to love the people parking infront to go shop at TJ.

  • Diane April 13, 2012 (1:01 pm)

    oh Mike and Jan; you made me laugh so hard; thank you for thinking of me; and yes, I was there for first 2 hours and going back after a respite
    first of all, I burst into tears when I walked in the door; yep, very emotional; so happy; beyond ecstatic; big crowd when the doors opened; more and more kept arriving; everyone so happy; overwhelmingly wonderful
    and then on to exploring, looking up close at all the details in the gorgeous murals, meeting all the staff; talking to neighbors; more exploring
    they have the largest restrooms I’ve ever seen in a TJ’s; 3 stalls, 2 sinks, changing table
    our street signs line the wall of the hallway; mine is there (Hinds)
    little shopping carts for the kidlets; super awesome
    excellent parking; ~50 in surface lot next to store; another bunch upstairs; I parked in garage, which is very pleasant, filled with light from windows, painted yellow guard rails; there is clear choice of elevator or stairs to and from store from upper parking
    there are bike racks in upper garage; and they will be installing bike racks out front; today there are staff out front who will watch your bike for you (at least that’s what they offered to the bicyclist I saw)
    festive steel drums; balloon creations; lei’s; free TJ’s bags; lots of sampling; fully stocked shelves (which I’ve never seen) so all the staff were able to circulate, welcome, chat
    only down side of the day/which is also a plus, because at least I am forewarned; my current favorite item is being discontinued (which I won’t reveal because it’ll sell out); so I stocked up, and have to start weaning myself off; dang, this always happens with TJ’s
    I am for sure going back later today to observe the after-work traffic flow and parking situation, especially after the bowling alley opens
    I brought my camera, but didn’t take any pics yet; will try to do that next time
    after all, now I can go to Trader Joe’s every day; yay yay yay !!!
    oh, and then a couple errands; BECU atm at Admiral Safeway; which was empty; tee hee

  • miws April 13, 2012 (1:15 pm)

    Cindertag, around 18 years ago, I used to mop the service garage floor, clean desks/table, and vacuum, there! (And over at Les Schwab too!)


    Jan, ah….that makes sense! ;-)



  • Junctionite April 13, 2012 (1:52 pm)

    I never have to drive to Burien again :)

  • CanDo April 13, 2012 (1:53 pm)

    Just got back…walked a ways to get there since it’s a nice sunny day. I haven’t shopped TJs in years because it wasn’t convenient and was very surprised at their lower prices on most items. I was just going to look around this morning but ended up with two bags since their prices were so great. Agree that there was a good vibe at the store and friendly employees. Lines were full, but there wasn’t a really long wait. Definitely worth the visit!

  • Junctionite April 13, 2012 (1:54 pm)

    Are there any bike racks? I didn’t see any walking by.

    • WSB April 13, 2012 (1:58 pm)

      Diane explained the bike racks.

  • herongrrrl April 13, 2012 (2:00 pm)

    Al–yes, looks like there was at least one bike rack in the garage on the roof.

    Despite my misgivings about the crowds, I did go this morning, and it WAS crowded, but everybody was in such a good mood!

  • Harry Reems April 13, 2012 (2:43 pm)

    Hopefully the UFCW can do something about TJ being non-union. Until they unionize, I will continue to patronize one of the 3 Safeways in West Seattle.

  • boy April 13, 2012 (2:58 pm)

    You want good prices on food, try shopping at the new Super saver in white center. I could not belive how ceap things are. Sure it does not have all the new paint an fancey murals but the prices are right. Oh and they still have plastic bags.

  • 2 Much Whine April 13, 2012 (3:03 pm)

    It’s hard to get out of that “gotta stock up because who knows how long it will be until we make it back” mode. We’re so used to buying 3 or 4 packages of hummus at a time – it’s really hard to buy just one but then I realized I can go to TJ’s any time I damn well please now. . . . . life is good.

  • Saficious April 13, 2012 (3:08 pm)

    TJ’s rocks! I recently had to relocate temporarily to Idaho for a job and while I have always LOVED Trader Joe’s and have always shopped there faithfully for cheese, veggies, wine, etc., once I was in an area that didn’t have a TJ’s (not 1 in the entire state) I realized just how lucky we are in Washington to have Trader Joe’s. I am moving back in less than two weeks and one of the first stops I will make will be the TJ’s in Everett! Long live TJ’s. You make my life complete ; )

  • Jim April 13, 2012 (3:14 pm)

    Me wonders if they’ll soon carry booze as in other states, Always had better prices on that too.

    • WSB April 13, 2012 (3:23 pm)

      Jim – I neglected to mention. Will add to this story. They (and other TJ’s in Seattle) applied for their spirits-sales license just yesterday. – TR

  • Tella April 13, 2012 (3:21 pm)

    I am wondering if TJ food comes from China. If so, that is why is cheaper.

  • Mike April 13, 2012 (3:42 pm)

    @ Noelle-You want a WHOLE FOODS? Take a look in the big hole behind TJs. You can blame that on WHOLE FOODS. And there used to be a big fabric store there. Gone! Blame that on WHOLE FOODS, too! I say phooey on WHOLE FOODS and their bad practices.

  • Thistle April 13, 2012 (4:05 pm)

    Love the new store – it is so open in comparison to other TJ’s in the city.

    “Hopefully the UFCW can do something about TJ being non-union”

    Honest question: Why unionize when you do not need to? Now this is just based on my own experience but I have two family members who work for Trader Joe in Oregon for upwards of 5 years now and they love it. They make well above Union level wages (well more then what one of them did as a 10 year Safeway employee) have benefits that include insurance, guaranteed full time hours, paid vacation time, and generally feel that there is excellent communication between employees and their supervisors/higher ups. This has been pretty much what I have heard talking to long time employees here in Washington. Why change a good thing?

  • Bubba April 13, 2012 (4:17 pm)

    1. My understanding is that they are union-free by choice. (And paid well with great benefits.). I can tell just by chatting with TJ’s employees that they are much happier with their jobs than most employees at Safeway.
    2. They don’t receive any food from China. If you read the labels, it will always tell you country of origin. Unless its produced in the US– in that case no labeling is necessary.
    3. Their website explains very well how they can provide such low prices.

  • John April 13, 2012 (5:34 pm)

    Yes, hooray for non-union businesses that treat their employees so well without needing to be bullied into it. This is reason enough to support them!

  • mrsB April 13, 2012 (5:51 pm)

    Mike, don’t blame Whole Foods for the hole in the ground, it was clearly the developers’ fault, WF was merely the prospective tenant, together with Hancock Fabrics, perhaps it was an overly ambitious project but get your “villains” straight please.

  • Tyler April 13, 2012 (5:51 pm)

    1. It’s nice to see Trader Joe’s finally open in West Seattle.

    2. I am appalled at the “lei-cutting” ceremony. For starters, there is no Trader Joe’s in Hawaii and cutting a lei is not even close to how Hawaii celebrates the opening of a new establishment. What a way to stomp on a culture that already has a great distaste for mainland values. Trader Joe’s should really research this before making executive decisions to have some attempt at a Hawaiian blessing ceremony.

  • Tjshopper April 13, 2012 (6:32 pm)

    Can someone tell me where is the overflow parking lot?

    • WSB April 13, 2012 (6:35 pm)

      The official parking is the lot accessible from Fauntleroy Way, on the east side of the store, and the roof area accessible from 39th SW, on the west side of the store. By “overflow” I meant street parking – there are some angle spaces on both sides of 39th, for example.

  • DF April 13, 2012 (7:07 pm)

    I was the lot attendant at the Chevy dealership. Was a great company to work for. Welcome to West Seattle Trader Joe’s hope you folks do your part to maintan your new corner of West Seattle inviting.

  • Cclarue April 13, 2012 (7:08 pm)

    Crowded at 5pm. Great store layout!!! Of course i picked the slowest line ever!!;)

  • timeslid April 13, 2012 (8:37 pm)

    Loved the new store. Just wished that the signature gatherer for the 2/3 tax initiative wasn’t there being the greeter for the store. Casts a bad light on the opening – let’s be apolitical on such occasions. I get the first amendment implications, but dog gone it, can we set aside political issues from celebrations?

  • duder April 13, 2012 (8:38 pm)

    Trader Joe’s = Yuppie Wal-Mart

  • Dave April 13, 2012 (8:54 pm)

    People, get a grip . . . it’s a freakin grocery store! What a bunch of lemmings!

  • concernedinws April 13, 2012 (9:33 pm)

    Made the trek into TJ’s and wasn’t disappointed. Lots of people but staff were all smiling and helpful and the lines weren’t THAT long! Welcome to WS, Trader Joe’s and staff.

  • Mike April 13, 2012 (9:47 pm)

    Harry Reems, you support only union based grocers? I try to avoid them. I worked for that union many moons ago (nearly 15+ years ago), they took my money every paycheck and gave me NOTHING in return. Why, how’s that you ask? Because if you don’t work enough hours (high school kids only got to work 20 hours a week during the school year, state law here) you don’t get any union benefits. However, you’re required to pay union dues or be FIRED! Eventually I left and worked elsewhere. I’ve never worked for a union again and honestly, I can’t say there’s any reason to work for a union. I always feel horrible for the poor bastards forced to strike or be fired. Sad, just sad.

  • Diane April 13, 2012 (10:18 pm)

    lines in the store were SUPER long between 6 and 8pm; every line went all the way to back of the store; but it was still fun

  • Carrie P. April 14, 2012 (1:17 am)

    Make sure to pick up the free TJ’s grocery bag, I heard they will banish all plastic bags soon!! eeek!

  • luke April 14, 2012 (2:07 am)

    I was excited to check out tj’s next week after the crowd died down, but after all this union talk I’ll continue to support PCC. I had no idea tj’s was non union. Be wise; organize!

  • Roberto April 14, 2012 (7:37 am)

    Finally! Can’t wait to visit. I think it’s the closest Vashon will ever be to a TJ’s. And when my bus went by at 6:00 am Friday, there was no one waiting outside. “Mark” must have wandered off for a potty break.

  • Kayleigh April 14, 2012 (7:54 am)

    I adore TJs but I am waiting till the crowds die down before I venture in. Though I’m wondering if the crowds will *ever* die down!

  • Doggril April 14, 2012 (8:29 am)

    Mike – I can’t speak to your specific situation, but it’s very likely that you benefitted from the wage scale that was negotiated by the union, the working conditions that were negotiated by the union, and the employer accountability to treat their workers fairly–that was due to union presence.

  • Doggril April 14, 2012 (8:37 am)

    Thistle – I can’t claim with certainty that it is the case with TJ’s; but there are plenty of situations where employers have treated their employees well specifically in order to avoid being unionized. When that’s the primary motivation, then those workers, whether they recognize it or not, are benefitting from the presence of unions.
    I get that unions have their share of examples of making bone-headed decisions. What’s mystifying is that businesses also have no shortage of examples of bone-headed decisions, and yet you never hear that businesses have “served their purpose and need to go away.” The notion of workers having a place at the table is the whole reason for unions; and the need for that will never go away.

  • duder April 14, 2012 (8:53 am)

    All employees in this country benefit from the work of unions as they have to abide by laws that unions fought to win. If they act under the threat of being unionized that is a benefit of unions. Unions have a word for those workers at trader joe’s – freeloaders.

    You might as well be shopping at Wal-Mart.

  • Casey April 14, 2012 (10:24 am)

    Went to TJ’s yesterday, it was very nice. Much larger than any other TJ’s I’d been to before. I knew it would be a bit crazy, some of the lines did stretch from the registers halfway down a few of the aisles, which was inconvenient but expected. I didn’t really see anyone grumbling or scowling about waiting, so everyone seemed to have similar expectations.

    For anyone who came to this specific thread to remind everyone why TJ’s is inferior to X store, you really should stop. That’s not entirely unlike walking up to a group of people at a video game store that explicitly caters to the Xbox and someone walks in and just spouts on and on about how inferior it is to a Playstation 3.

    Really? You have that kind of time? You’re that bored and/or condescending? Shop at PCC, shop at a place with unions, but leave the people who are very pleased with their choices to enjoy those choices. It’s the Internet, there are a lot of other more (and less) productive things to do.

  • Doris April 14, 2012 (10:40 am)

    “Really? You have that kind of time? You’re that bored and/or condescending?”
    Welcome to the Internet.

  • DRW April 14, 2012 (11:44 am)

    I had to go go on opening day. I signed the online petition a couple of years ago to get TJs in West Seattle. It worked! It was a real neighborhood feeling yesterday afternoon. Lots of people inexplicably smiling while they were shopping. I even ran into friends. It was a great day to be home.

  • miws April 14, 2012 (12:48 pm)

    Diane, if you find yourself face to face with someone holding the last package, of whatever the soon to be discontinued item is, and they’re pondering buying it, simply say: “Oh, you don’t want to waste your money on that! I bought it once, and it was terrible!


    Then, as they thank you, and set the item back down, and walk away, you can grab it! ;-)


    Years and years ago, a buddy of mine where I worked at the time related how he had gone to a video rental place on his lunchbreak to pick up a particular movie. Some other guy was holding the only copy left, reading the synopsis on the label.
    My buddy sez (paraphrasing): “I rented that movie last week. It was terrible!” The other guy puts the movie back on the shelf and walks away, and my buddy had the movie he wanted for the weekend!



  • Jiggers April 14, 2012 (1:16 pm)

    LMAOFF dave…

  • Laurie April 14, 2012 (2:51 pm)

    “Harry Reems!” LOL!

  • Richard April 15, 2012 (8:35 am)

    Now all we need is a Street Car to the Fauntleroy Ferry Dock.
    Thanks TJ! Glad you are here!

  • NFiorentini April 15, 2012 (8:35 am)

    When I lived in Austin, I used to shop at the flagship Whole Foods at W. 6th and Lamar. For West Seattle, between the new Trader Joes, the Metropolitan, PCC, and the Farmers’ Market, a Whole Foods here would be a hugely disappointing experience.

    And if you wanna expand the range to include all of Seattle and the plethora of specialty shops and stores (like Uwajimaya), I have no idea how Whole Foods competes with that. Folks, we live in the foodie capital of the planet. Relish that fact.

  • The HepCat April 15, 2012 (6:53 pm)

    The Hepcat is looking forward to visiting this union-free shopping extravaganza. Unions were great at one time, but, last I checked, we weren’t chaining 13 year olds to sewing machines.
    Welcome TJ’s!

  • Kathy April 16, 2012 (11:11 pm)

    TJ/s could get bike racks installed on the sidewalk by the City if they ask them to.

  • Value workers April 22, 2012 (1:47 am)

    Many of you seem to have little idea of how a union works. Thank you to those of you who spoke of freeloaders and how all of us are benefiting from unions (child-labor laws? 40-hr work-weeks? overtime? minimum wage? etc. etc.). Trader Joe’s regularly fires people who start to discuss forming a union. This is not legal, but it is notoriously hard to prosecute. Your cheap food comes at great moral cost, and great physical cost to workers of all low-wage jobs. Shop union; in this city it’s difficult not to. It never ceases to amaze me how many people show up to Seattle protests carrying Target Bags, Starbucks Lattes, and Trader Joe’s food. It’s all connected, and it starts with all of us not patronizing anti-union stores like Trader Joe’s.

  • Value workers April 22, 2012 (2:03 am)

    @Thistle: You’re correct that if you ask TJ workers if they’re happy, most will say yes. That’s because they fire the ones who start to speak up for living wages, a seat at the table, a voice in their working conditions, etc. Then they bribe the “good” (non-union) ones so they don’t get such ideas.

    @Mike: your comment is infuriating – what did the union do for me? “The union” was you. There is no third-party. You, unfortunately, appear to have believed management anti-union propaganda that there is this magical fat-cat union that just takes your money and does nothing. I ask you, what would’ve happened had you been disciplined for something you hadn’t done? That’s right, you would’ve had a union. That contract that guaranteed you just-cause? From the union. Your wage scale ensuring that you didn’t get paid more than someone else based on your sex? From the union. But moreover, if you didn’t feel the union contract was giving you what you wanted, you should have gone to your local meetings and used your voice and your vote to change it. Management doesn’t give you the option to affect change; union democracy is the only place you’ll get that in this country. Your union was only as strong as the people who did not show up to their local meetings to vote. Also, you blame state laws about part-timers, but somehow the union was responsible for that? It doesn’t even make sense. Finally, it sounds like you lived in a closed-shop state. This is great; it prevents management from being able to take high-school kids (most of whom don’t care about things like living wages or health insurance) and convince them that a few dollars a month to their union are not worth it, thereby corroding the power of the union for all workers including the full-time adults who are trying to make ends meet on minimum wage and no health insurance.

    @LG: This incident was widely-documented at the time. Two deaths of TJ workers. The fact that you can’t find information about it should show you just how scary Trader Joe’s is as a corporation. Do you really want to support a company that can completely expunge the deaths of two human beings so that you can feel good about drinking some really cheap wine?

Sorry, comment time is over.