Supermarket chains rated by Consumer Reports

by Bryan Salvage
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YONKERS, N.Y. — According to Consumer Reports’ latest survey of the best national and regional grocery chains, shoppers found Wegmans, Trader Joe's, Publix, Raley's, Harris Teeter, Fareway, Costco, Whole Foods Market, Market Basket, WinCo Foods, and Stater Bros. among the most satisfying supermarket chains among shoppers.

The survey included 32,599 respondents who answered questions about their experiences at supermarkets, supercenters, or warehouse clubs in the past year. In total, Consumer Reports ratings include information from 48,831 store visits.

Grocers earned higher marks than in CR's last supermarket survey (2005) for service, checkout speed, quality of store brands, baked goods and produce. Finding the perfect store, however, was hard. The few chains that offered standout meat and produce, for example, earned only average scores for price, at best.

Wegmans and Whole Foods offered praiseworthy meat and produce and Wegmans, Trader Joes and Raley's earned high marks for service. Respondents found Trader Joe's, Costco, Market Basket, WinCo, Aldi and Sav-a-Lot to be among the higher rated stores in terms of offering low prices.

Several supermarket trends identified by the survey included: more visible value brands, expanded bonus-card programs, web site specials, longer sales, and offering more coupons.

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