Grocery stores: the great regional divide. As much as we like to expound powerful arguments about which one is the best, information insights platform Wise Voter recently looked at the most popular grocery stores by actual foot traffic in each state. According to the site, foot traffic in grocery stores has increased by 2.9% since last year. Here are some other interesting tidbits about the map above:
- Albertsons cleans up across a broad swath of the West, with Hy-Vee taking a chunk of the Midwest and Meijer, Kroger, Safeway, and Food Lion dominating in their respective regions.
- While the Wise Voter report lists each state’s top five most popular grocery stores (or at least the most walked in), Wyoming only had one store listed, and North Dakota only had two. Both of these states had Albertsons at the top; North Dakota also had Fred’s. Maine also had only two stores listed: Trader Joe’s and Vons. All very different, but similar in that each of these stores sound like it’s run by a powerful produce lord.
- There’s a grocery store called Harris Teeter in Maryland and Virginia, which is an incredible way to learn that grocery stores can have full names. A grocery store can just be called “Rima Parikh”? Do celebrities know about this? Is this a business opportunity for them at all? What if you could go pick up oranges from a place called “Dennis Rodman”?
- Speaking of stores that sound like someone’s full name, Piggly Wiggly should be national. More grocery stores should have animal-related names. Food Lion’s no Piggly Wiggly, but at least it’s having fun!
- Jewel-Osco supremacy! Jewel-Osco supremacy! (I’m from Illinois.)
- Trader Joe’s has the top foot traffic in both California and Maine, and makes the top-five list of a few other states. It makes sense as a snack emporium, but in terms of produce, I’ve always found TJ’s to be somewhat lacking. Maybe that varies by location, or maybe it’s because my memories are tainted by the sheer amount of bagged frozen pasta I bought there in my early 20s.
Sentimental value aside, a grocery store is a grocery store. All of them are going to have roughly what you need, especially if what you need is to disassociate in the pasta aisle.