The once-mighty Trader Joe's has been knocked from the top spot in the annual ranking of America's favorite grocery stores. A study conducted by Market Force, a "consumer experience management company," looked at the experiences of more than 12,000 shoppers to determine which U.S. grocery chain people love the most.
Released May 9, the study revealed the top spot this year is split between Publix and Wegmans, both of which scored a 77 on Market Force's Customer Loyalty Index, edging out former No. 1 Trader Joe's, which scored a 76.
Take a look at th 20 best grocery chains in America below.
16. Giant Food Store
Rounding out the best 20 grocery stores in America is Giant Food Stores, with locations in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia, which scored at 43 percent on Market Force's study.
15. Sam's Club / Meijer / Albertsons (Tie)
The No. 15 spot in this year's study holds a three-way tie between Sam's Club, Meijer and Albertsons, each scoring a 49 percent ranking.
14. Food Lion
Food Lion, operating out of Salisbury, North Carolina, managed a 52 percent customer loyalty ranking, placing 14 in this year's Market Force study.
With stores in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania, the Northeastern mainstay ShopRite came in 13th this year. It managed a customer loyalty ranking of 53 percent.
12. Winn-Dixie Stores
Based out of Florida and with stores in its home state along with Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi, Winn-Dixie placed 12th year with a customer loyalty ranking of 54 percent.
Branching into the grocery world only recently, Target came in 11th in this year's ranking with a 56 percent.
Rounding out the top 10 is Kroger. The largest U.S. supermarket chain by revenue and third-largest retailer in the world earned a 57 percent customer loyalty ranking.
9. Fry's Food and Drug
Founded in California but primarily operating in Arizona, Fry's Food and Drug received a 58 percent on the company's loyalty index, placing them ninth.
8. Whole Foods Market
The Austin-bred Whole Foods Market, "America's Healthiest Grocery Store," ranked eighth in Market Force's survey with a loyalty ranking of 61 percent.
7. WinCo Foods
Idaho-based WinCo Foods, with stores in Arizona, California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington, is the seventh-favorite grocery store in the country with a 62 percent loyalty ranking.
6. Costco / Hy-Vee Food Stores (tie)
Employee-owned Midwestern Hy-Vee stores, headquartered out of West Des Moines, Iowa, took sixth place tied with bulk store Costco, each with a ranking of 65 percent on Market Force's Customer Loyalty Index.
5. Harris Teeter
With stores across the Southeast, in North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Maryland, Delaware, Florida and Washington, D.C., North Carolina-based Harris Teeter stores landed in fifth place in this year's ranking, with a 66 percent customer loyalty ranking.
Discount supermarket chain ALDI, founded by brothers Karl and Theo Albrecht in Germany in 1946, managed a 68 percent loyalty ranking, making it the No. 4 favorite in the U.S.
The Aldi Nord division of the company also owns No. 2-ranked Trader Joe's, making this brand one to contend with.
Texas-born and -based, H-E-B came in third place this year, with a 69 percent loyalty ranking, up 10 percent from 2016.
2. Trader Joe's
Falling to second place in this year's ranking, and then only by a single percentage point, Trader Joe's is still a favorite.
Of the stores ranked, too, it consistently achieved the highest marks for customer service.
1. Publix / Wegmans (Tie)
The New England/Mid-Atlantic Wegmans Food Markets and Southeastern Publix Super Markets are locked in a dead-heat for first place in this year's rankings.
Each scored an impressive 77 percent customer loyalty ranking.
This post was originally published in May 2017.
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