Apr 24, 2024 - News

H-E-B maintains lead over Kroger in Houston's grocery store wars

Bar chart showing largest grocers by market share in the Houston area in 2023. The grocer with the largest share was H-E-B with 25% of market share.
Correction: The chart has been updated after Chain Store Guide revised its Houston data. Note: Stores under the same brand name have been combined — e.g., Walmart and Walmart Supercenter. Chart: Axios Visuals

H-E-B and its affiliates remained the chain with the largest share of the Houston region's grocery marketplace last year.

Why it matters: H-E-B and Kroger are waging a quiet war for the hearts and wallets of Greater Houstonians.

  • The two chains combined made up more than 45% of the region's grocery market in 2023, according to new data shared with Axios by Chain Store Guide, which tracks the retail and food service industries.

The big picture: Both H-E-B and Kroger gained ground on their competitors, per Chain Store Guide.

  • H-E-B had 24.9% of the region's market share in 2023, compared with Kroger's 22%.
  • Walmart dropped to third in 2023 with 19.7% of the market.

Flashback: H-E-B took the cake in 2022 with 23.9% of the region's market share, with Kroger in third at 20% of the market.

  • Walmart sat between them at 22.3%.

💭 Shafaq's thought bubble: I grew up next to a Kroger and still have a deep fondness for that particular location. But I have grown to appreciate H-E-B with its local products — it has become my go-to grocery store.

😲 Jay's thought bubble: My older sister worked at a Kroger in Katy when I was growing up, so my family always patronized the store when I was a kid.

  • In adulthood, I've grown fond of H-E-B's offerings and easy-to-use delivery and curbside services.

Editor's note: The headline, chart and story were corrected to reflect revised data from Chain Store Guide, which shows H-E-B and affiliates (not Kroger) had the largest share of Houston's grocery marketplace last year.

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