Dumpster Diving at Trader Joe’s: An Ultimate Guide

If you are a dumpster diving fanatic like me and looking for a guide on dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s, you’ve come to the right place. In this comprehensive article, I’ll provide you with everything you’ll need to know in order to have a successful dumpster diving adventure at your nearest Trader Joe’s store. Moreover, I will also discuss the some of the best strategies and the legalities while dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s. Let’s get started!

Dumpster Diving at Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s is a well-known American chain of grocery stores that operates 530 stores in the United States. Among the variety of groceries, they also sell beverages, flowers and plants, household essentials, and nutritional supplements. Furthermore, the selection at each Trader Joe’s location is tailored to the area and its customers. Dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s is a thrilling experience in and of itself because you never know what you’ll come across.

Customer satisfaction can sometimes be a deciding factor in this retail behemoth’s success. And, as we all know, one of the most effective ways to satisfy customers is to offer a reasonable return and refund policy. If you are not completely satisfied with the quality of their products, you may return them to any of the Trader Joe’s stores in the United States for a full refund, subject to the restrictions of their Return Policy. Furthermore, Trader Joe’s has one of the best return policies in the retail world. With or without a receipt, you can return practically any purchase to one of their stores for a full refund. This covers edible things that you’ve opened and even consumed as well as non-edible ones that weren’t up to par.

The vast majority of the damaged packaging and returned goods are discarded in Trader Joe’s stores. Dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s is therefore an unforgettable experience. Trader Joe’s dumpsters frequently contain great products that have either damaged packaging or are no longer wanted in their stores. You can expect to find sunscreens, lotions, pet products, groceries and also cleaning chemicals, and liquid laundry in Trader Joe’s dumpsters.

Trader Joe’s stores are usually run in one of two ways. Most of their locations are independent, but some are part of a shopping mall or complex. Finding and diving into dumpsters will be difficult if your Trader Joe’s store is located within a shopping complex or mall. The dumpster is usually located at the back of the property if your local Trader Joe’s store is a stand-alone operation.

Related: Dumpster Diving at Whole Foods: A Comprehensive Guide

Is it illegal to Dumpster Dive at Trader Joe’s?

Dumpster diving is not illegal, but it is not encouraged on the premises of Trader Joe’s. Keep in mind that the majority of Trader Joe’s stores are considered private property when dumpster diving. They have the right to ask you to leave if they don’t like you being in their store or even at their property.

As a result, keep an eye out for prominent trespassing warning signs at the Trader Joe’s location. If you don’t see one, it’s a green light. If you entered the Trader Joe’s dumpster despite the clearly visible No Trespassing sign, you could be charged with trespassing. This could result in a permanent ban from their stores. In the worst-case scenario, you could be charged with disorderly conduct, illegal dumping, and other offenses.

Therefore, if someone from Trader Joe’s management asks you to leave while dumpster diving at their property, you must comply.

I also suggest that you look into the dumpster diving laws and regulations in your area and/or state. This will keep you from breaking any laws while dumpster diving at your local Trader Joe’s. You can use the search box below to seek up the law in your state.

What is the best time to Dumpster Dive at Trader Joe’s?

Trader Joe’s locations are usually open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on most days. As a result, the best time to go garbage diving at Trader Joe’s is just before the store opens or just after it closes. Because there is fewer staff working at this hour, the chances of a disturbance are also smaller. Additionally, numerous Trader Joe’s employees claim that the shelves are restocked frequently. According to them, most of the shelves are stocked either at 7 a.m in the morning or at around 10 p.m once the store is closed for customers. Some unsold items are disposed of in dumpsters or compactors during shelf replenishing.

Weekends are also perfect for going through the dumpsters at Trader Joe’s. Trader Joe’s expects the most returns and refunds on weekends because the store is busiest then. You should anticipate seeing a lot of returned products at their dumpsters on weekends, as we all know they discard returns with damaged packaging.

What to look for while Dumpster Diving at Trader Joe’s?

Your needs will dictate what to search for in a Trader Joe’s dumpster. Some people go to Trader Joe’s dumpster diving in the hopes of selling the perfumes or other personal care items they find. While most people just look for basic grocery items for self-consumption.

If your aim is to resell the dumpster diving finds at Trader Joe’s, look for products with a high resale value or items that are easier to sell. Soaps, candles, chocolates, lotions, scents, and other personal care and beauty products are all considered high resell valued items while dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s.

Does Trader Joe’s throw away the returns?

Surprisingly, Trader Joe’s dumps a lot of returns and unsold groceries in dumpsters. Items that aren’t selling or are ready to spoil are to be thrown away by employees. Furthermore, any product returned with damaged packaging will be discarded in the Trader Joe’s dumpsters.

How much money can you make from Dumpster Diving at Trader Joe’s?

At Trader Joe’s, you might make a lot of money from dumpster diving. However, most of it will be determined by your luck and knowledge. Six full-time dumpster divers in Tennessee were polled in one of our research, and the findings were shocking. According to our research, these dumpster divers made an average of just $87.50 every week from Trader Joe’s alone. However, their food expenses declined by $120 per week. I mean it makes sense, dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s is a great way to cut some expenses from your grocery shopping as you are basically getting healthy foods for free. On the other hand, if you want to resell the dumpster finds and make some money, you have to be really lucky to find something that has a high resale value.

Is this to suggest that every dumpster diver at Trader Joe’s will produce similar results? Obviously not. You could make $1,000 or nothing at all. Everything is determined by chance and experience.

Dumpster diving at Trader Joe’s is a great way to make extra money and save money on groceries provided you don’t mind getting your hands dirty. However, it might not be sufficient to keep you afloat if you’re just getting started. I thus urge you to start your own dumpster diving venture as a side project. Once you’ve accumulated enough expertise and are earning a consistent income, you might want to think about dumpster diving full-time.

Final Thoughts

Be cautious when garbage diving at Trader Joe’s. Broken bottles and beverages should be avoided because they are frequently outdated or old. Wear long-sleeved clothing and keep an eye out for smashed glasses or rusted iron when sifting through the rubbish. Furthermore, even if an object looks to be clean, disinfect it thoroughly. Remember that if management asks you to leave, you must leave immediately. Not only will having a strategy and plan in place save you time, but it will also increase the efficiency of your Trader Joe’s dumpster diving.