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5 Safest Places to Shop for Food Right Now, According to Survey

So much remains unknown about the virus and consumers find comfort shopping in stores they can trust.
Kroger store front

As we enter into fall, it's no question that Americans are afraid of what danger potentially lies ahead, regarding the flu season now coupled with COVID-19. A recent survey conducted by a global leader in customer service data science, dunnhumby, in Chicago was able to roughly gauge how concerned people feel while shopping in grocery stores.

The Consumer Pulse Survey, which analyzed people's responses in four separate waves (a time frame of about three to four days) between March, April, May, and July, revealed that only 25% of Americans surveyed believe the government is handling the pandemic well. The survey also included a "Worry Index" which measures how concerned consumers are about COVID-19 in general. As of the most recent wave, 29% of Americans responded that they still feel worried about the virus, up 6% from the third wave, and nearly in line with the first wave at 30%.

That increase was likely attributable to the spike in the infection rate that occurred at the end of June and in early July, which is about when the answers for the fourth wave were recorded. Still, it goes to show that consumers have anxiety about the virus, especially when entering public places where others are also roaming. Another key finding from the study is that consumers are shifting toward online grocery shopping. Now, only 65% of all food trips are physical trips to the grocery store.

While there is a slight decrease in foot traffic in grocery stores, there are five places that survey respondents said they feel safer going into for food than others.

1

Walmart

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More than 30% of respondents said that Walmart was doing a good job responding to complications imposed by COVID-19 during Wave 4, which is reflective of the time period between July 9 and July 12. For context, in Wave 1 only 25% of survey participants said the brand was handling the situation well.

2

CVS

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While you may not think of CVS as a grocery store, the pharmacy does sell various fresh, pre-cut fruit as well as dairy products and offers several healthy packaged food options.

3

Walgreens

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Walgreens isn't a supermarket by any means, but the way they've been enforcing restrictions throughout the pandemic has made many consumers feel at ease while perusing the aisles of the store.

4

Target

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Target was one of the first major chains to offer special seniors only hours at the start of the pandemic to help ensure elderly consumers felt safe while shopping.

5

Kroger

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As of July 22, Kroger made it mandatory for all shoppers to wear masks while grocery shopping.

For more, check out 6 Major Changes Coming to Grocery Stores.

Cheyenne Buckingham
Cheyenne Buckingham is the news editor of Eat This, Not That!, specializing in food and drink coverage, and breaking down the science behind the latest health studies and information. Read more