They didn’t hold back.
The majority of readers said the area needs another grocery store to compete with the Giant supermarket that’s located directly across the street because, as one reader wrote, “Giant sucks.”
Some said they would prefer to see Weis Markets reopen the store it closed in Fairmont Village two-and-a-half years ago and others advocated for names like Wegmans and Aldi, but the majority of readers–more than 30–said they’d like a Trader Joe’s to open there.
Trader Joe’s is a privately held, California-based supermarket chain known for its distinctive Hawaiian-style branding, assiduous staff, exotic gourmet food selection, somewhat secretive corporate culture and cult-like consumer following.
The Lehigh Valley remains one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country without a Trader Joe’s, although a couple of stores are located within an hour’s drive or so of the area, including stores in North Wales, Montgomery County, and Westfield, N.J.
Whole Foods, which is often regarded as a competitor to Trader Joe’s, opened a store in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County, in September 2016, however the company has not publicly displayed any interest in entering the local marketplace since then.
In August 2019, the Morning Call published a story that attempted to analyze the demographics Trader Joe’s prizes in areas it is eyeing for new store locations; areas which the newspaper reported can boast median household incomes in excess of $100,000.
According to statistics published by the site CensusReporter.org, the median household income in the Southern Lehigh School District–which includes Coopersburg, Upper Saucon Township and Lower Milford Township–is just shy of that number, at $97,406.