Where can you get the cheapest groceries in Charlotte? We compare prices at 9 st…

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Katherine Peralta | The Charlotte Observer) – In all places you go searching Charlotte, issues appear to be getting costlier – property, faculty tuition, automobiles. However one main expenditure isn’t: Groceries.

Meals costs have fallen throughout the board during the last three years at Charlotte’s 4 largest grocers by market share: Harris Teeter, Walmart, Meals Lion and Publix, in line with an Observer evaluation of 14 widespread grocery gadgets. Costs fell probably the most at Meals Lion in the course of the three-yr interval, however Walmart had the bottom complete worth for the 14 gadgets.

The rationale for the worth drop is 2-fold.

For one, Charlotte’s grocery competitors has intensified as chains similar to Publix open extra shops right here, and as grocery giants take over smaller chains (resembling Kroger shopping for Harris Teeter.)

RELATED: Harris Teeter bought to Kroger

The Charlotte metro space, which additionally consists of Harmony and Gastonia, had 529 grocery shops on the finish of 2014, in accordance with gross sales-monitoring agency Chain Retailer Information. By the top of 2016, that had climbed to 605.

“Retailers have turn into much more aggressive with one another,” stated Phil Lempert, a nationwide grocery store analyst. “It’s an enormous win for shoppers.”

The second cause: worth deflation. Based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics, grocery prices have solely began incrementally choosing up this yr after falling for 9 straight months late final yr, Bloomberg notes.

Anticipate grocery costs to maintain rising steadily now, says Lempert, though a number of things – from drought to fowl flu – can have an effect on meals prices.

We took a take a look at how grocery costs fell in Charlotte during the last three years.

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The outcomes

In Might 2014, The Observer in contrast costs on an inventory of straightforward grocery gadgets at Harris Teeter, Publix, Meals Lion and Walmart, nonetheless Charlotte’s 4 largest grocers by market share.

This yr, The Observer repeated that comparability buying July 18, however eradicated one merchandise, since not all 4 shops now carry the identical measurement field of Particular Okay cereal. We recalculated the 2014 totals, then in contrast them to 2017’s. We didn’t use pricing based mostly on loyalty packages or valued-buyer playing cards.

We discovered that Meals Lion costs have fallen 5.eight % since 2014, the most important drop of any grocer. The basket of 14 gadgets, which included staples comparable to a sixteen-ounce field of Barilla spaghetti and a gallon of nonfat milk, value $36.38 at Meals Lion. That’s nonetheless barely greater than Walmart’s $32.06, down 5.6 % from…

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