Folsom, California, USA - October 19, 2011: Storefront view of a Trader Joe's grocery store with parked cars and shoppers going in and out.  Trader Joe's is a privately held chain of specialty grocery stores .The first Trader Joe's store opened in Pasadena, California in 1967 and today there are over 360 stores in 29 states.
Why Doesn't Trader Joe's Have Self-Checkout?
By Angel Albring
It wasn’t until the early 2000s that self-checkout machines became widespread in retail stores, and their assistance with quicker checkout times and reducing labor costs means they’re here to stay. However, there's one popular store you won't see them in – Trader Joe's.
Trader Joe’s decision not to use self-checkout technology aligns with its brand values and commitment to providing a unique and friendly shopping experience. Having self-checkouts would take away the number of knowledgeable staff members they have, so they did the opposite of installing those machines and hired more employees.
Trader Joe’s has a smaller number of items in its stores than its competitors, meaning their checkout lines are typically shorter and faster as it is. Ultimately, according to Trader Joe's marketing director, Tara Miller, "The bottom line here is that our people remain our most valued resource."