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Trader Joe's picked as favorite grocery chain by surveyed shoppers

Trader Joe’s came out on top of a list of favorite North American grocery chains, chosen by more than 6,600 consumers surveyed by Market Force Information.

The report, released Wednesday, showed Publix Super Markets and Whole Foods Market rounding out the top three favorites.

In the West, Safeway ruled the list. Kroger led in the South and the Midwest, and Stop & Shop reigned in the Northeast. In Canada, Loblaws was the preferred brand.

Wal-Mart had the lowest satisfaction score of the 30 brands studied -- even though its score was nearly four out of five, with five the best possible score. The chain was also ranked as the least likely to be recommended by guests. Roughly 35% of consumers who consider Wal-Mart to be their primary grocery store said they would advise others to shop there.

Trader Joe’s, based in Monrovia, landed a 4.8 satisfaction score and a recommendation plug from nearly 95% of shoppers.

Convenience was voted the most important attribute for a grocery chain, followed by prices, and then by sales and promotions.

Ralph’s was deemed the convenience winner. Aldi dominated the price race. Winn-Dixie topped the crowd in the bargains category.

Other leaders: Meijer in product selection, Wal-Mart and Target for one-stop shopping and Trader Joe’s in atmosphere and fast checkouts.

The Market Force report also showed a steady decline in coupon use over the last three years.

“With most consumers satisfied with their grocery-shopping experiences, it makes for a very competitive playing field for grocers looking to distinguish themselves from the masses,” said Janet Eden-Harris, marketing chief for Market Force.

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