Deep-discount Gernan grocer Lidl will open its 18th store on Long Island Wednesday, June 30 at 1151 Old Country Road, Riverhead. Photo: Denise Civiletti

Deep-discount German grocer Lidl will open its Route 58, Riverhead store Wednesday morning.

The grand opening event, which kicks off at 7:40 a.m. with a ribbon-cutting ceremony, will feature “get-them-while-you-can” grand opening special offers, the company said in a press release issued last week. The first 100 customers will receive a special gift card ranging from $5 to $100 each. There will be other giveaways and shoppers can enter to win a $500 Lidl gift card, according to the press release.

The store will offer hundreds of organic and gluten free products among its selection of private label and national brand products, including an “ever-changing selection of food and non-food specials brought in each Wednesday for a limited time,” according to the press release. The rotating non-food selection will include fitness gear, small kitchen appliances, toys, outdoor furniture, and more, it said.

It will also offer produce, meats, seafood, baked goods, cut flowers and other items found in supermarkets “at low Lidl prices.”

Like its German discount rival Aldi, which opened in Riverhead in January 2014, about 80% of Lidl’s products are private-label. Lidl said the majority of its products are sourced in the U.S. It also offers “unique, European specialty items ranging from hard-to-find cheeses to authentic specialty sauces, cured meats, and more.”

Lidl backs its products with a “Love it Guarantee” that entitles shoppers to a refund and a replacement if they don’t love the product they buy.

Lidl, which operates more than 11,000 stores in 32 countries, opened its first U.S. store in 2017. It currently operates more than 150 stores in East Coast states. Lidl U.S. is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.

The Riverhead store, located at 1151 Old Country Road, is Lidl’s 18th on Long Island. It will operate from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days.

Lidl Riverhead is currently hiring. Starting pay is $16.50 per hour.

Lidl offers medical, prescription drug, dental and vision benefits for all employees, including part-time. It also provides employees with up to 20 days paid time off per year (for sickness or vacation) plus six paid holidays annually. It also offers a 401K plan with a 5% company match and no vesting schedule.

The company also offers a “total well-being” program to all employees, which includes a monetary reward for completing annual health screenings, and an employee assistance program (available to employees and their household members.)

Interested persons can apply online here.

Lidl Riverhead’s 35,000-square-foot supermarket was formerly occupied by Toys ‘R’ Us, which closed in April 2018 after the chain went into bankruptcy in September 2017. The store was originally built as a specialty supermarket, Gamaldi’s Meat Way, in the early 1990s. It closed after just a few years and the property was sold to Toys ‘R’ Us in 1995.

In November 2018, Lidl announced its purchase of Best Market’s 24 stores on Long Island, as well as three in New York City and one in New Jersey. Before the acquisition, Lidl operated 59 supermarkets in the U.S. Lidl said at the time it planned a step-by-step transition process beginning in 2019 that would involve the remodeling, reinvestment and reflagging of Best Market stores to converted Lidl stores.

The space previously occupied by Best Market in Riverhead, located in the TJ Maxx shopping Center at 1120 Old Country Road, was reopened in March as a Fine Fare supermarket. Fine Fare Supermarkets is a chain of independently owned and operated supermarkets in the New York metro area. There are several locations in Suffolk, including Middle Island, Brentwood, Farmingville and Copiague.

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Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.