Is that a 6-foot dinosaur in the Publix aisle? What the supermarket mascots look like

Publix has a mascot — and its name is not BOGO.

The Florida-based supermarket rolled out Plato the Publixaurus more than 30 years ago. The company says it also considered a farmer as a mascot but went with the dinosaur — which looks a bit like an alligator, if you ask us.

Customers don’t see Plato often. Most of the mascot’s appearances involve community events and store openings. Four years ago, for instance, Plato greeted customers at the grand opening of a new Publix in downtown Hollywood.

Plato meets young customers at Publix.
Plato meets young customers at Publix.

The birth of Plato the Publixaurus

Plato was first introduced as a character in a kids’ coloring book, according to the company. The Publixaurus made its in-the-flesh (in the scales?) debut at a store opening in Georgia in 1991.

The name doesn’t have a particular significance.

“We thought he needed a real name rather than just Publixaurus. I named him Plato, and it seemed to work,” said company artist Warren Dossey, who worked on the first sketches of the farmer and the dinosaur.

“The company wanted to create a character that would appeal to children,” Publix says.

Product mascots fill the aisles of grocery stores — Tony the Tiger, Sam the Toucan, the Keebler Elf — but is Publix all alone in supermarket mascots?

Let’s take a look:

Supermarket mascots

Winn-Dixie has featured the Winn Win Twinns that sniff out the best products.

Pepe the Penguin has been the Kroger mascot. But the Ohio grocery giant doesn’t have brick-and-mortar stores in Florida, although it delivers groceries door-to-door in blue trucks from giant warehouses in the state.

Trader Joe’s unofficial mascot is a lobster.

Buc-ee’s, the Texas-based food market and gas stop that has expanded to Florida, is all about Bucc-ee the Beaver, on signs and on merch.

Aldi, at least the ones in Europe, have Kevin the Carrot.