Lidl U.S. is in the midst of a major growth push.
The hard discounter last Wednesday opened its first Baltimore location, in Northwoods Commons, bringing fresh food to the northeast corner of the city that has struggled as a food desert. The Arlington, Va.-based division of Germany’s Schwarz Group said it is also readying for the opening of its newest Atlanta store on Aug. 17.
The Baltimore store, which is located at 1500 Havenwood Road and will operate daily from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., employs 45 people with starting pay for all associates at $15.50.
Company executives and local leaders welcomed the store to the community at a ribbon cutting last week.
“We’ve waited a long time for a quality grocer to come to the Greater Northwood neighborhoods, and, like many, I’m looking forward to having my first Lidl experience right here in my own community,” Baltimore City Councilman Ryan Dorsey said in a statement.
The grocery store, which is located in the northeast corner of Baltimore and anchored by Morgan State University, has been much-anticipated by a population that “has been waiting for decades to have a first-rate supermarket in our community," Morgan State President Dr. David K. Wilson said in a statement.
"We are finally getting one," Wilson said. "Our communities are excited to welcome a place where they can shop for fresh food, including meats, seafood, fruits and vegetables, and to get those items at reasonable prices. We are no longer a food desert. Hallelujah!"
In Atlanta, the store will be located at 1855 Memorial Drive and will create more than 40 new jobs in the city’s District 3 area, with starting pay for all associates at $15 per hour, the grocer said in a statement.
“We are excited to welcome Lidl to District 3, bringing much-needed jobs and expanded food choices to our community,” said Dekalb County Commissioner Larry Johnson in a statement. “This has truly been a community and economic development collaboration.”
Lidl said that starting pay for all associates at the Atlanta store will be $15 per hour. Lidl will offer a variety of grand opening specials next month.
“The first 100 customers in line before the ribbon cutting will be presented with a gift card ranging from $5 to $100 each and shoppers can enter to win a $500 Lidl gift card, sample Lidl’s award-winning assortment and take advantage of special giveaways,” the company said in a statement.
Lidl said both stores offer comprehensive benefits for all employees, including healthcare.
The hard discounter is also expanding on Long Island. In April, the grocer broke ground on its largest and first ground-up build there.
The $15 million store, which will be the grocer’s 22nd store on Long Island, will be 35,359 square feet. Located in Deer Park N.Y., the state-of-the-art store is set to open in early 2023, the grocer said in a statement.
Lidl recently announced efforts to drop prices on more than 100 items in all of its stores across nine East Coast states. The price-cutting campaign, Lidl said, comes as inflationary pressures across the supply chain have led to sharp increases in food prices for many retailers, especially on staples such as meat, grains, coffee, frozen prepared foods and other household products.
"As many families contend with rising prices due to inflation, we hope to ease their financial burden at the checkout counter by investing even more to lower our prices," Lidl U.S. President and CEO Michal Lagunionek said in a statement last month. "This price-cutting drive is part of Lidl's ongoing commitment to offer the best value in every community we serve."