FRIDLEY, Minn. -- Like a quality bread, the factory at 7350 Commerce Lane is rather hard and a bit crusty on the outside. The good part is found on the inside.
"It's a surprise everyday," laughs Heather Sealy, the outlet coordinator at the Ralcorp Frozen Bakery Products outlet store. Even Heather doesn't know which of the company's breads will wind up on her shelves one day to the next.
She does know, however, the bakery overruns and sometimes misshaped loaves that fill her shelves will be cheap. "Average price is about a dollar a loaf," she explains.
It's the reason more than one customer groaned when they saw the television news crew arrive. "This is one of my favorite places," scolded Penny Sandahl of Blaine, "and it gets crowded whenever there's any publicity."
Yet Ralcorp is not the Twin Cities' only bakery outlet offering discount prices.
The Hopkins Thrift Bakery, 1812 Main Street in Hopkins, sells donuts, desserts and breads from Cub and Jerry's grocery stores -- at or just past their expiration dates. Price: three loaves for $1.75.
Store Manager Shirley Renville stands by the quality of her "day-old" bread. "When you buy something or bake it at home, you don't eat three dozen cookies up at one time, or whatever, you can let it sit around; this stuff is just like fresh."
Another bakery outlet that closed earlier this year reopened this week. Renee Hanson is now running the outlet at the Pan-O-Gold distribution center at 3200 Ranchview Lane in Plymouth. "It's day-old bread but we're selling it 50 percent off regular price," she said.
Ralcorp Frozen Bakery Products outlet store
7350 Commerce Lane, Fridley; 763-586-6241
Hopkins Thrift Bakery
1812 Main Street, Hopkins; 952-931-9679
3200 Ranchview Lane, Plymouth; 763-559-1515
(Copyright 2010 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)