WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Consumer Reports ranks best, worst grocery chains

Posted April 3, 2015

Grocery store

Consumer Reports has released the results of a new survey ranking the best and worst grocery chains in the country. A few of our local stores did very well. And Walmart is no longer the lowest ranked store on the list.

The stores were voted on by over 62,000 Consumer Reports subscribers who rated multiple shopping trips over a period of 16 months during 2013 and 2014. Below are the rankings for our local stores as well as the top and bottom ranked stores. I am thrilled to see that we have 8 stores in the Triangle who are in the top 25.

For the full list of 68 stores and their placement on the list, head to You'll also find a slideshow showcasing the bottom 13 stores including some colorful comments from shoppers. If you have ever lived in the Northeast, you will recognize many of them.

Store Rank and Store Name

1. Wegmans - this New York based store has had the top spot in this survey for 10 years!
2. Publix
3. Trader Joe’s
6. Costco
9. The Fresh Market
14. ALDI
15. Whole Foods Market
17. Harris Teeter
25. Lowes Foods
31. Kroger
34. IGA
37. Piggly Wiggly
42. BJ’s Wholesale Club
45. Target
46. BI-LO
47. Sam’s Club
52. Food Lion
67. Walmart
68. Waldbaums - This Northeast grocery chain is owned by the same folks who own Pathmark and A&P (#65 and #66 in the rankings).

Do you agree with the rankings? Who do you think is the #1 grocery store in our area?


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  • methinkthis Apr 14, 2015

    It would be great to get a Publix in NR or WF.

  • wral suks bauls Apr 3, 2015

    Just read your reply Faye and totally agree. Many times you can save a ton of money buying the sales. Even better many times at Kroger and especially HT - you can get products for FREE or in the cents area. You won't find that at walmart. Not to mention the gross feeling that comes upon you when you're in walmart. It feels Like losing all faith in humanity when in there.....

  • wral suks bauls Apr 3, 2015

    View quoted thread

    I used to think like that... But if you catch the sales... Or even better sales + coupons at other stores (HT, Kroger) a lot of times it's the same price or even lower. 10 years ago walmart was tolerable... It has steadily gone down hill over the years. Now a days the rude and some low IQ cashiers, awful CS, and shoddy products - I'd rather shop at food lion, Kroger, and HT-- and save a trip to WM every once and a blue moon for when I can't get those products anywhere else cheaper.

  • TJ84 Apr 3, 2015

    Faye, I agree with you. You really can save a lot by reading your posts on the sales and using the coupons that match up and you do have to shop the different stores to get the best savings.

  • Faye Prosser -WRAL Smart Shopper Apr 3, 2015

    For those of you who think that Harris Teeter, Lowes Foods & Kroger are high priced, I encourage you look at the deal posts I make for these stores each week. You can save substantially more than you can at most of the other stores you are listing on produce, meat, & all the food & non-food coupon items. If you really want to save money, your willingness to go to at least one additional store each week will make a big difference. Remember that not one of the stores mentioned in the survey always has the lowest prices all the time. Here are the deal posts for those stores this week:

    Harris Teeter: Foods: Lion & Aldi have great produce deals this week!

  • 1tarheelgirl1 Apr 3, 2015

    Harris Teeter, Lowes and Kroger are way overpriced.

  • sandim50 Apr 3, 2015

    View quoted thread

    Peter, I am inclined to agree with you. I shop Harris Teeter, Kroger, Food Lion & Walmart I do not know how they score the stores by ranking them. For SHOW Harris Teeter is on Top, for everything else its Walmart Price, quality, and variety + one stop shoping

  • timmytim Apr 2, 2015

    View quoted thread

    Have you been in a Tops lately? Tops has gone downhill. Now it would be like comparing a Walmart to a Harris Teeter. "Tops Never Stops.....rolling downhill"

  • joe31 Apr 2, 2015

    I've shopped at Wegmans for a number of years and yes, it's a good store if you are looking for a specialty item or you just love to eat and eat. I've enjoyed the size of the super markets in NC and I can be I and out within minutes. Food lion is number one to me and Kroger is also a favorite - krogers owns Harris teeter and probably to capture the big dollars. I do wonder about the questions asked; as for me, all Carolina grocery stores are number one. My weight has also improved by staying away from the big stores up north.

  • Luv2Camp Apr 2, 2015

    I am somewhat surprised to see Food Lion escaping the absolute bottom of the list.