The Popular Brand Behind Trader Joe's Dry Roasted & Salted Pistachios

Trader Joe's fans are nothing if not enamored with the store's carefully curated selection of house brand products, even going as far as asking store employees when the next shipments will arrive. From Mexican elote tinged corn chips to creamy hummus, its items are as delicious as they are budget-friendly. One simple but popular snack they sling is a bag of dry-roasted and salted pistachios, but Trader Joe's isn't the only store to offer them.

It would take a Herculean undertaking for those at Trader Joe's HQ to run a successful grocery store and manage the factories that churn out the goods. Luckily, they don't have to as they turn to third-party vendors to supply them with cookies, smoothies, and more that are then repackaged under Trader Joe labels. For consumers, the vexing part of this arrangement is how opaque both Trader Joe's and its vendors are when it comes to who supplies the store with what and whether the product can be had elsewhere. Confirmations from either side are few and far between.

When it comes to the dry-roasted and salted pistachios, though, it is now public knowledge which firm provides the company with the nuts. Due to an unfortunate incident in 2016, when Paramount Farms was forced to recall products possibly tainted with salmonella, they were obliged to name the stores they service, and Trader Joe's was among them. 

A Wonderful secret is revealed

If Paramount Farms isn't a familiar name to most, that can be excused. This large, California pistachio grower isn't a direct-to-consumer outfit, but rather a supplier of nuts to Trader Joe's and under its own, better-known brand. Paramount was at one time part of the large agricultural and business group Roll Global. In 2015, that company rebranded itself under the lofty moniker The Wonderful Company. As one might imagine, this outfit is the producer of Wonderful brand pistachios seen in stores. The Wonderful Company also produces and sells POM Wonderful pomegranate juice and products and Fiji bottled water.

Recalls such as the one that forced Paramount Farms to pull both Trader Joe's and Wonderful pistachios out of stores are one of the only sure windows into how Trader Joe's sources its food products. It should also be noted that in the eight year window since the recall, the store may have switched providers for its pistachios.

Another tool intrepid investigators have used to try to figure out the provenance of Trader Joe's products has been ingredients lists. Take, for instance, Snack Factory's Pretzel Crisps and Trader Joe's Pretzel Slims which have strikingly similar ingredients and even packaging. The same can be said for Trader Joe's Animal Crackers and those from Stauffer's, though the packaging is different. Regardless of where they come from, just remember that — at least in our opinion — there are always going to be hits and misses at Trader Joe's