The 5 Healthiest Grocery Stores in America Aren't What You Think

Whole Foods may epitomize healthy eating, but you don’t have to shop at the spendy retailer to eat well, according to a new survey. Regional grocery store chains earned the highest marks for offering good quality, well-priced, and locally sourced food options, according to a survey by Consumer Reports.

More than 75,000 Consumer Reports members provided feedback on 96 grocery stores across the United States. Stores were evaluated on factors including price, service, quality, and variety, according to the outlet. These stores ranked highest for healthy food choices and quality produce:

According to Eating Well, Wegmans stands out because it offers nutritional information on all-store prepared foods, which is not typical of most grocery stores. The chain also uses 16 different labels to showcase health benefits of products and whether an item fits dietary restrictions.

Many people surveyed, about 43 percent, purchased organic foods in the past month, despite the high cost. Consumer Reports found that organic foods prices is expensive at nearly all supermarkets. However, Aldi, Costco, and Trader Joe’s received high rankings for affordable options.

Burt Flickinger III, managing director at consulting company Strategic Resource Group, explained that there are many factors keeping organic prices high, including transportation costs.

“Even if you have a great organic crop in Southern California, the price to get a truckload to Philadelphia is now $5,500, from $2,500 a few years ago,” Flickinger told Consumer Reports.

Sure, this is just one survey, but it goes to show that you don’t need to shop at niche natural markets or expensive organic shops to eat healthy. Need more ideas for eating well without spending a fortune? Check out our tips for making the most of your grocery budget.

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