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The annual Harris Poll EquiTrend (EQ) study is out, and for the first time it looks at grocery retail brands on a regional basis, using four census regions - Midwest, Northeast, South and West - and examining "three key factors of brand equity: Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration."

According to this year's poll, Hy-Vee gets top marks in the midwest, Wegmans is rated the best grocery brand in the Northeast, Publix gets the honors in the south, and Costco is the best grocery brand in the west.

"These stores put an emphasis on building a relationship with the customer," says Michael Treboni, EVP of retail professional services at Nielsen, which acquired Harris Interactive and The Harris Poll in early 2014, "and it's paid off with positive Brand Equity." 

According to the poll, "also ranking above the Midwest Region Grocery Store category average are Meijer, Giant Eagle, Kroger, Whole Foods Market, Trader Joe's, Walmart (Groceries) and Jewel & Jewel-Osco … Trader Joe's, Whole Foods Market, ShopRite, Hannaford Bros., BJ's Wholesale Club (Groceries), Stop & Shop, Costco (Groceries), Price Chopper and Giant Food Stores also rank above the Northeast Region Grocery Store category average … Walmart (Groceries), H-E-B, Trader Joe's, Harris Teeter, Whole Foods Market, Kroger, Sam's Club (Groceries) and Target (Groceries) … Other brands to rank above the category average in the West Region include Trader Joe's, Whole Foods Market, Safeway and Stater Bros. Markets."

The poll is based on interviews with more than 41,000 U.S. consumers.
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