Issaquah-based Costco earns high marks in survey of grocery chains

April 3, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. April 3, 2012

Issaquah-based Costco earned high marks among 52 major grocery chains in a Consumer Reports survey released Tuesday.

The largest warehouse club chain in the United States clinched the No. 5 spot on the list. Survey respondents lauded Costco for price, products and shopping environment, but dinged the retail giant for customer service.

The 24,203 Consumer Reports subscribers involved in the survey rated Wegmans, Trader Joe’s, Publix and Fareway in the top spots in the survey. (Trader Joe’s operates a store in Issaquah at Pickering Place.)

Though Costco earned points for a selection of quality meat and produce, a clean shopping environment and budget-friendly prices, the chain faltered in the service category, defined as employee courtesy and checkout speed.

Consumer Reports said “service is minimal at warehouse clubs such as Costco, and lengthy lines are a tradeoff for day-in, day-out deals.”

Pathmark, Walmart Supercenter, Shaw’s, A&P and Jewel-Osco received the lowest rankings in the survey.

Consumer Reports love Costco. In March, readers lauded the warehouse club chain for quality among major retailers.

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