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Lidl looking for a little more

lidlLidl’s foray into the U.S. market started strong. According to analysis by inMarket reported in the Wall Street Journal, the German deep-discount supermarket was drawing 11 percent of consumer visits to traditional grocers in the nine markets in Virginia and the Carolinas that it was in. Just two months later that number fell below 8 percent.

“This is designed for us to learn and adapt and be nimble,” Will Harwood, a Lidl spokesman based at the company’s U.S. headquarters in Arlington, VA, told the Journal. “It’s not about whether our model works in a market, but what we do to adapt to that market.”

Lidl’s produce strategy, which is to promote organic offerings while deemphasizing conventional options, seems to be counter-intuitive to its discounting roots. The timing of Lidl’s arrival didn’t help either. The first stores opened just days before the Amazon-Whole Foods merger and as that supermarket lowered prices to better compete. Additionally, Lidl does not currently have an online shopping option in the U.S.