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Supermarket shoppers want quality produce, fresh meat, short lines, decent prices, and overall cleanliness. Failing at these factors can have disastrous results.

In fact, “three in 10 shoppers switched supermarkets due to poor selection, long lines, awful food, or dirtiness,” according to The Fiscal Times. While online shopping is changing many categories, most people still rely on brick-and-mortar stores to stock their pantries.

Some grocers are improving the overall shopping experience, while others are racking up complaints.

Check out the 10 supermarkets with the worst reputations!

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83 thoughts on “These Are the 10 Worst Grocery Store Chains in America”

  1. The only grocery in my area was Walmart Supercenter. I go there only because of low prices. I WILL NOT by their fresh meats and I have found numerous expired items both canned and fresh. If I had more income I would shop at Harris-Teeter.

    1. On at least two occasions I’ve handed a store stocker an expired item I came across. In both instances they simply, robotically, placed it back on the shelf as I was standing there.

      1. Expired does not mean no good or poison. It is provided as a guide to the consumer. Just because the date of the product when it is ON THE SHELF has passed does not mean it cannot be consumed.

        BTW, the vast majority of other countries do not have dates on their consumables.

    2. I’m not sure what kind of survey that was.
      We have a Pick and Save in our town but it said another state. Everyone has WalMart. I thought there would be results from larger chains like Krogers and even Aldi’s.
      I used to be connected to a farm and we would get our beef fresh and the difference was great but now….
      Wife works Aldi’s and we’ve found som really good bargains on a lot of stuff but you have to deal with longer lines and bagging your quickly handled food. (They are times to keep their lines moving and keep their jobs)

    3. I agree on Walmarts lack of quality overall, cleanliness is bad, meats and produce are not good, horrible customer service, prices steadily going up but not quality, customers are for sure not number one, very few open registers are the norm, let’s not even talk about how shelves are always empty anymore, very poor management at most Walmarts, No one goes around d pulling items forward so I can reach them, no one on the floor to help ever so have to ask other customers to help, and the list goes on and on, they are maybe a 30 in my book or less

      1. I go to Walmart for a lot of my grocery shopping because prices are lower than my neighborhood supermarket (Acme which is very high priced), but have to watch some prices could be higher than other stores and when they raise prices they don’t raise them little by little they do it all at once, I saw prices jump up $1, however I will not buy meats or produce from Walmart because they have the worst. I agree they lack cleanliness, the worst customer service, cashiers if you can find one which is far and in between are miserable, they bag your groceries with cleaning products. The shelves are always empty no matter what day you go and this has been way before the pandemic and I don’t think this is do to bad management because I go to 3 different Walmart’s and they all are the same, empty shelves. We need to have a store to compete against Walmart’s prices and keep the Shelves stocked.

      2. Any business is a reflection of it’s management, and WalMart is certainly no exception. You will rarely see the store manager visible in the store, so this leaves it to the supervisors, who vie for popularity among the associates. I must commend our local four stores for their personal assistance when asked where an item is located and the associate will lead you to the location. BUT, WalMart is not overall perfect……Too Large!!!

        1. I only Shop at Giant Eagle. Food fresh, clean store employees helpful and friendly.
          Maybe a few cents more but worth it to me. Use to work for Giant Eagle great company to work for.
          I purchase my meet from a butcher.
          I have tried other stores all have a problem

    4. Harris Teeter has fallen in quality since Kroger bought them. They have dropped many well known name brands (better in quality) to push, push, push the Harris teeter brands, and unknown brand names, coming from who knows where.

      I like Publix.

    5. One of my favorite food stores to get some good deals, is dollar tree in Florida, and sorounding areas, the second one is aldi’s in Florida, New Jersey and other places, the nest one is Walmart, my favorite store, especially in the automobile section where you can get good deals on oils,filters,fuel treatments, and vehicle care product’s, than other vehicle suppliers around the county or country. And is also Oprah Winfrey favorite store, she said it on her talk show, when I was living in New Jersey.

    6. Everyone is so brainwashed in believing Walmart has the lowest prices, including myself until I started doing some checking around & comparison pricing. They are NOT the lowest prices around by any means. My husband & I totally stopped going into Walmart the very day we walked in & talked to the manager & were told they no longer were mandating wearing of masks. I ask him if he’s been living in a cave because people of all ages are setting records daily from dying or testing positive & hope they don’t die. We found that we don’t miss it one bit & will NEVER go back into a Walmart. We like Target so much better anyway. Our lives are worth spending a few more pennies over. That’s about what it amounts to. Good Luck in the New Year & please wear your masks everywhere. It could save a life & maybe your own. 😷 😷 ✌️ 😷 😷
      Btw; We live in MissourI about an hour west of St.Louis City. Take Care & Again, Be Safe!!

      1. BLAH BLAH BLAH about your masks. They offer NO protection from the KUNG FLU. You and the rest of your leftie robots go to target . They are a liberal POS chain that is overpriced and anti American.

  2. I use Walmart for paper goods and other things, but never meats, fruits or vegetables. I use their online order and pick up, then go to Winn-Dixie or Publix for the other items.

    1. The thing I like with win now-Dixie is the sale, especially, the buy one and get one free, and also the Winn- Dixie card, when you spend $50.00 and over, you get a fuel perks only to go to any shell fuel stations and get your discount fuel, my best fuel is the V POWER gasoline, my car perform better it was on the website.

  3. Have to disagree. Our Walmart in Saint Augustine, FL is a great place to shop for meat and produce. I find the crew very friendly and helpful. On our income, we cannot afford not to shop Walmart.

  4. There has to be a special place in hell for Wal Marts food managers. Deceptive, outdated, limited assortment and as they say, “Friendly with Low Prices”. Fat chance!

  5. I shop at Walmart for the pricing but the produce I purchase at Publix, Walmart shopping charts look like they haven’t been replaced in 10 years the rubber is coming off of the wheels and all you get is a bump bump that is very annoying the shelves are not kept up they use to be better but are going down hill.

  6. I live near a Walmart superstore. They have poor customer service. Most of the staff seem to walk around aimlessly while there are long lines for check out. Making a return is another long wait if they will even give you a refund. They do have good pricing.

  7. We have several choices in addition to Walmart in my local area: Publix, Winn Dixie, et. al. Walmart’s prices, as stated in the article, are generally the lowest. A favorite item in our household, Pepperidge Farms German Dark Wheat Bread – is a full dollar more than Walmart’s price at Publix and the others. However because, we assume, of each store’s local demographics, it is not regularly available at all the Walmarts. Same with other products we regularly purchase. So too frequently we have to go to other Walmarts to get these items. PITA!

    1. Audrey Jane Spaulding

      We only have a Wal-mart and City Market. Whole foods but their prices are way up there. I shop Walmart just for canned goods and other items. No fresh food there, just frozen.

  8. I”m not surprised that Wal Mart was on the list and that staff courtesy or meat quality was an issue.
    Wal Mart employees have the worst attitude of any place I shop. As far as meat quality, I had bought ground chuck, nice and red. Unwrapped it when I got home and it was brown underneath, someone just placed fresh meat over old. Now that’s nasty and down right dishonest.

    1. Actually, meat that hasn’t been exposed to the air is naturally brown, so what you see is not necessarily bad. Smell it; that’s the test.

  9. I worked for Walmart for 24 years…..I would not buy meat………and ALWAYS watch for expired foods!!!!! Place is a mad house!

  10. I am 75yrs.old and I have shopped many different grocery stores. And worked at a few of them. Like I. G.A, years ago. It was my first grocery store job. I liked it, And it was locally owned. But Publix is my favorite grocery store.I have never liked Wallmart. I worked Publix for a long time. And then my Downs Syndrome daughter also worked there for five years. I have found that if you shop sales, And buy one get one free sales, I can compare prices with anyone. I can`t beat it any where else. This is`t a worst store, But the Best store.

  11. I quit buying fresh cuts of meat from Schnuck’s here in the St. Louis Area. They mis label meat….I bought 3 so called Black Angus New York Strip Sirloin Steaks last week. After I got them home and cooked them, I found out they were actually Top Round and not Sirloin Steak. They were cut to resemble Strip Sirloin but were not. The kick in the butt was I paid $16.00 for them…OUCH!!

    1. I certainly would have returned them or the package and receipt some years ago I was a meat cutter at SCHNUCKS In the St Louis Area and everything was top notch 👍

    2. We only have Acme where I live, as it is a small town. We don’t have Wal-Mart that has groceries. I still get some food at the closes one. It a 60 mile round trip to get to it.

  12. Everything you said about Pick n’ Save is true but it still the largest grocery store near our house and offers many choices. Their organic section is small but has everything I need. Their bakery is top notch. We still also shop at Piggly Wiggly for meats. If need be, we will go to Festival for a few things. They are the furthest from our house. And Walmart is the last on the list. We only by a certain brand of olives there because they do have the cheapest price Other than that , I don’t shop Walmart for anything. The store in our city is so dirty.

  13. I love ALDI……no fuss in there. Fastest checkouts! Bring your own bag or BUY one of their bags. They have what you need. You will not have a bunch of brands……..what you see is what you get. That store is my favorite because I have no patience . I get what I need and if they don’t have what I want, Walmart is one traffic light away across the road. SIMPLE!!!

  14. I love my Walmart Supercenter~ if they had one deficiency, it would be keeping the shelves stocked. My store is so busy, the minute it is stocked, the item is gone. This store is relatively new and is located in Madeira Beach, FL.

    1. Tera, I use to shop there when it first opened then I moved to Mainlands over on 34st It was great in 208 when I was there


  16. Michael A. Gilliam

    Occasionally I may pick something up like chips or some other snack or drink but I will NEVER buy meat or produce at a Walmart.

  17. Omg the Ralph’s in Beverly Hills Ca. Should be condemned!! Yuk!!!!!!! All the supermarkets there are GROSS!!!!!!!

  18. The rankings on this list might change dramatically if any of the above stores had bathroom tissue available for sale during the pandemic.

  19. I shop Wal-Mart because it’s everywhere and the prices are low plus they carry everything under one roof. The quality control is at times subpar. An expert shopper can navigate around some of the undesirable items they carry.


    1. Absolutely the best of everything!!! Customer service is amazing!! Wish we had them here in the south-when I go up north I can’t wait to go into one of the Wegman’s-ship many of their items back home-Publix & Aldi’s are my southern store choices!!

  21. The store managers have a lot to do with the atmosphere of the store and the manners of the store help. The nearest Food Lion near me is dreadful. Employees clueless and rude. The overall selection of organic products at Food Lion is minimal to begin with. Only two bags of organic carrots-and both had “use by” dates that were several days old. I called it to a clerks attention and laid them on her cart. As soon as I head down the next aisle, I looked back and she was placing them back on the shelf. Found several bottles of milk that were so far past the use-by that they had begun to “blow-up” because they had gone bad. I’ll just stick with Publix!

  22. I shop Walmart for all staples that I might be able to purchase elsewhere. Their prices are lower and I enjoy the savings. For organic, upscale items and specialty items, I shop at the grocery stores that carry them. A smart Shopper follows quality and money. Interesting list!

  23. I have lived in many states illinois, Wisconsin, Arizona, WV, Colorado, Missouri, Arkansas, Texas, Tennessee…. u get the picture I have over 20 yrs ago said even if I was a millionaire I would shop Wal-Mart i probably would still but for the competitive pricing. I’ve even worked for Walmart in the past. Employees are not trained well or in detail about their position i was in the deli so I was trained more so than most there. Electronics are well trained as well. For my area safety issues food n all. Customers are not cared for like they should be i always always willing to get people cared for as quickly as possible then the next person etc.. plus cleaning i made sure was done correctly or people would get sick. I quit cause I was given more n more hrs couldnt do it anymore was even called to come back w a raise. Not happening lol. But I never bought the meats cause the prices in each state was higher than any grocery store around. Shelves were n are empty no one knows when stuffs coming in either. The doors are revolving for staff constantly more than new customers. Prices are good for most items when they r there. If something sells well like boiled ham in deli was low priced n the best flavor for ham as well. They got rid of it. In beer the lowest priced was walmarts beer case of 24 was like 11.00. They got rid of it wanted the budweiser n other high priced beer to sell instead. Ridiculous. Expensive meats low quality out of date on lots of items. Watch for those. My opinion only of course. Wish they’d clean it up n do right by customers more wouldnt b beat as the best one stop shopping n grocery stores if things would change.

  24. i usually by items when I shop at Walmart. However when the carts are empty they don’t have the stuff other people are taking for granted during weekends. The workers that stock the shelves get their stuff from trucks that back in to the loading docks , which is not right.

  25. Patricia A Malinowski

    I pick andchoose at walmart and the meats have been ok. I am a Tops shopper altho their prices are higher than wegmans and walmart. The bakery items are better there than the other 2 and produce is pretty consistent.

  26. I lived in 5 to 7 different states and I’ve never like the grocery stores I shopped in, but here in Texas I found a store that I could call my own H.E.B. Customer service is excellent, their fruit, and vegetable
    department is great, the meat products are beautiful and always red, but I have to tell you, when you see beautiful red meat it’s because they put dye in it to make it appealing to the eye. I have been to many H.E.B stores in Texas, from Abilene, to Houston, to Dallas, you name it. They are the same consistency throughout the stores I’ve visited. That is why H.E.B is my #1 store. People your right the Fiestas, Walmart in San Antonio, are the saddest places to shop at.

  27. I love Public. They are very clean. I have been told by delivery people that if something is on the floor in the back, it will not be there when they come the next day. They carry out and will not accept a tip. They are very with finding things for you. I could go on and on. “Shopping is a pleasure” is their motto, and they live up to it. Iris

  28. We don’t eat meat in our house, so that is not a concern for us, but I agree that Wal-Mart is just plain icky. We normally shop at Aldi’s; they have a decent selection and you cannot beat their prices. They are even cheaper than the membership stores. Their Specially Selected items are always top-notch, and they carry a lot of European goodies. They don’t carry every thing we like, but there is a Redner’s a mile and a half from us, and they also have good prices (not as low as Aldi’s) and stock all the odds and ends we can’t find elsewhere.

  29. My wife and I play a game at our local Jewel/Osco (Illinois), who can find the most or oldest expired items. The stockers simply fill the empty spaces, the OJ and yogurt sections are good examples of that. I’ve seen cartons of OJ with dates over a month apart next to each other, the freshest stock in front. The children used to fill the shelves simply don’t care apparently, and the concept of FIFO is not taught, or at least used.

    Walmart is new to the grocery business, if they don’t improve they will eventually fail.

  30. Richard Leutzinger

    A good many of WalMarts’ customers do not understand that when a cart is used to haul groceries to the car that the intent is that they be returned so that someone else might have use of the cart. At the very least, return the cart to a rack area in the parking area. Wal-Marts carts can generally be found anywhere within a half mile of the store.

  31. I am from Los Angeles, CA. I will always live in Los Angeles,CA. I don’t do grocery shopping at Walmart. I do grocery shopping at Target, Vons, Albertsons, Ralphs, Vallarta,Super King,Gelsons, Food 4 Less, Trader Joe’s Whole Foods, Sprouts and COSTCO.

  32. My rating for Walmart changes depending on where I live. Walmart is the worst in the Northern VA area, where they were messy and employees clueless and rude. However, the Walmarts where I live now in NC are much, much better. The employees are friendly and helpful and the store much cleaner and organized. So I do a lot of my grocery shopping at Walmart (their bananas are always better than elsewhere). My other grocery shopping is divided among Harris Teeter, Aldi, and Publix….each store carries items that the others do not have. Wish I could find everything I need/want under one roof.

  33. Safeway in Oregon stinks, they only have a few checker lanes open over the day but are really bad when people come from work and go shopping they still only have maybe three or at most four lanes open with plenty of people it get’s very crowded very quickly, I used to shop at Safeway in Brooklyn New York in the 60’s they were way better back then.

  34. I’ve never heard of 8 of 10 of them. Safeway and WalMart are here, but the rest must be eastern, in which case I couldn’t care less. Sprouts, Trader Joe’s and Fry’s are the best here.

  35. Michael DeChirico

    HEB opened a store in my area about 6 years ago and the quality and selection of products offered has declined significantly over the time they are open.

    Trying are moving to offering only their “store brand” of item and most of them are substandard by any measurement,

    There customer service is a joke and trying to find a quality cut of beef is next to impossible.

    We have stopped shopping at HEB and can’t wait until they get the message and close their store in my area.

  36. I just replied to Virginia’s comment, but don’t think it posted yet. I left one thing out & just wanted to say that we love shopping at “KROGER” & have to drive about 30 minutes to do so. Target for everyday items & also Schnucks & Dierbergs, but again….KROGER is our store of choice. Everyone have a nice day & Happy New Year 2021 😷 🥳 💁‍♀️ 🎉 🎊 💥 ✌️ ❤️ 😷

  37. The Food Lion near me is the worst store I’ve ever been in. I’ve found produce there several days PAST it’s use-by date and it’s still out for sale at regular price! The pet food is seriously over-priced–Fancy Feast is .68 a can at Public, .70 a can at Kroger, and .77 a can at Food Lion!!! I’ve checked prices for other items and Food Lion is higher than either Publix or Kroger. Love Publix though!!! It’s nice to shop at a store where everyone greets you when you walk in!

  38. Organic foods are not important to me and I have enough stores in my location to satisfy me. This concerns one of your listings but economy is important since I live on a fixed income.

  39. When I was able to go to the store to get my groceries, I always went to Walmart. We have four grocery stores in our town: Walmart, Price Chopper, Dillons and Aldi. I liked to get different things at each store because of price and availability. The Walmart store has always been clean and the employees very helpful. The worst thing to be said about the store was that there were pallets(in the aisles) of items to be put away about one day each week. Now my daughter says that a lot of the items are out of stock whenever she goes to get my groceries. Buying online isn’t any better. When ordered online to be picked up at the store, quite a few times, when she gets to the parking area, she gets a text that certain items are not available and they are giving us something similar or not able to give us anything in its place. I think this is because of the presents conditions.

  40. David Sleeper

    There ain’t ten cents difference between any of these stores. They all have the same suppliers, are located where ever they are. They hire minimum wage people to run cash registers that are 3 points higher than the guy that captures your abandoned shopping cart. The shelves are stocked by folks from countries you never heard of and they can’t tell if the can reads 2021 or 2012. Most these stores have expired honey … half price!

  41. The grocery department at the Wal-Mart on 23rd. ST. Gainesville, FL. is disgraceful…The stocking of the shelves consists if Just shoving everything into the cases, anywhere you choose & walking away! No rhyme or reason. The whole place is disgusting! Someone should look into this Supercrnter.

  42. Elizabeth Sterling

    In our town, we have Stater Brod, Walmart and Sprouts. Aldi also. I shop mostly at W-M for pricing. And I don’t have to run somewhere else for non- grocery items. Just wish their meat was better.

  43. Stop N Shop is very high in prices. Their store is not so clean and they take so long to restock items. Their fruit and vegetables are good. Their meat department is very small
    and they do not have a large variety of meats. Also the prices are very high. Many time the produce bags are not available. By the bagels is always a mess. It seems they don’t check to see how oranized it is Not! I prefer Shoprite because their prices are good and they have much more merchandise than Stop N Shop. They are always restocking their items and the store is clean. Theses both stores are in Monroe Township, N.J and East Windsor, N.J.

  44. For sure Walmart’s need to improve their courtesy,and alot of their stores need alot of help with cleaning.The people working at some of these stores need help in how to smile and treat people with a little more respect!!

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