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Consumer Reports: Supermarket Savings

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Walmart is America's largest grocer, but in Consumer Reports' ratings of 55 supermarkets Walmart supercenters landed at the bottom. (Published Wednesday, Mar 26, 2014)

    Walmart is America's largest grocer, but in Consumer Reports' ratings of 55 supermarkets Walmart supercenters landed at the bottom, based on a survey of 27,000 of Consumer Reports' subscribers.

    Eight out of ten shoppers had at least one gripe — such as not enough open checkout lanes or items were out of stock. And Walmart earned low scores for meat and produce quality.

    NBC 5 reached out to Walmart for comment and this was the company's statement:

    "The customer is at the core of everything we do. We recently held our annual meeting with our 4,000 store managers and are more committed than ever to delivering our customers the products, prices and store experiences that exceed their expectations.

    Over the last several years, we've taken significant efforts to help ensure the quality of our meat and produce, and we've seen our customers respond positively to these changes. We also offer our customers a satisfaction guarantee on meat and produce. If they are not completely satisfied, all they have to do is bring back their receipt for a full refund."

    Danit Marquardt
    Walmart spokesperson

    Many people are drawn to Walmart because of its low prices. But Consumer Reports' survey found that people thought that the prices were as low or even lower at other grocery chains. In fact, seven of the highest-rated supermarkets rated better than Walmart for price (Trader Joe's, Costco, Market Basket, Fareway Stores, Stater Brothers, Win-Co, and Aldi).

    But no matter where you shop, there are good ways to cut costs.

    • Buy store brands. You’ll save about 20 percent on average. And in Consumer Reports’ taste tests they often score as well as name brands.
    • Skip cut up fruits and vegetables. Whole produce costs far less.
    • Check unit pricing. It’s the best way to determine which package size is the most economical.
    • Skim weekly specials for big bargains. The idea is that they draw you into the store. But don’t be seduced into buying more expensive items that aren’t on sale.
    • Beware those “ten for ten dollar” deals. You usually get the same bargain if you just buy one. So only buy what you really need.

     

    Complete Ratings and recommendations on all kinds of products, including appliances, cars & trucks, and electronic gear, are available on Consumer Reports’ website.