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Massachusetts currently has 19 Trader Joe’s locations. Once a year, someone in the area riles up the SouthCoast area and has everyone join efforts to sign the Trader Joe’s Request form. Many people take part in signing the form asking for Trader Joe’s to come to town so no one has to continue driving to Hyannis, Foxboro, or Warwick.

Nothing really comes of the rally and eventually, people forget about it until someone brings it up again a year later. And so, the cycle goes – the quest to bring Trader Joe’s to the SouthCoast.

A coworker recently stumbled upon a podcast called “Inside Trader Joe’s” and during Episode 10, the hosts described, in detail, how they go about considering new locations.

Certain things make Trader Joe’s such a force and the powers that be want to make sure the next new location will be just as successful as the others.

“Parking is a huge deciding factor. We've got a plan and that plan is based on customer feedback. We listen to Crew Members at the store, Regional Vice Presidents. We look at current stores, where things are really hot. We look at accessibility, visibility, parking, square footage. Parking is a thing and it's becoming a big thing. Clearly, a suburban area where the neighborhood is mostly folks driving. We would like a nice big beautiful parking lot. Because we, we do have kind of that reputation of crazy parking lots.”

The TJ Team also likes to experience a place first hand. “we like to go there. You know … Drive around and see what people are up to and just kind of get a sense of really what's going on and how people live and how they drive around.”

According to an article from Dgajsek.com, “TRADER JOE’S - Building A Grocery Store With Cult-Like Fans,” it’s important that the right people are available to staff the store and become the “Trader Joe’s Jolly Roger Crew.” “The only thing that holds us back is the number of captains and crew members who can run it the right way. We won’t open the new stores if there are not the right Trader Joe’s people.”

Submitting a form does not guarantee you’ll get one, no matter how many people fill it out. But you will at least be on the TJ’s radar.

Which SouthCoast community could be the next Trader Joe's location? New Bedford, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Wareham, Fall River, even Taunton – you won't know until you ask.

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