Apr 1, 2021 - News

Target and Walmart top Cub Foods as Twin Cities' top grocers

Data: Chain Store Guide; Chart: Axios Visuals

Cub Foods, long the Twin Cities' dominant grocer, now only ranks third in market share here, according to a recent report from Chain Store Guide, a sales-tracking firm that examined 2020 grocery revenue in the 15-county metro.

The state of play: Cub, with its 74 metro stores, fell behind Target and Walmart — which have fewer stores but higher volumes.

  • Cub's market share was north of 40% in the 1990s and, as recently as 2018, it remained on top with 20%, according to Chain Store Guide data published in the Star Tribune.

Flashback: In that Strib story, Cub Foods' then-parent company Supervalu said it was confident it could keep its top spot as a wave of new competitors flooded into the market, including Hy-Vee and Fresh Thyme.

  • But it hasn't actually been Hy-Vee gobbling up most of the market share.
  • Instead, Target jumped from 11.4% to 18.3 as it improved its e-commerce game.

What's next: There's yet another grocer coming to town, and it's one everyone should be paying attention to.

  • Amazon is planning a major entrance into the market, with at least four of its checkout-free Fresh stores.

The bottom line: We've always lived in a competitive grocery market, and it's only grown more cutthroat in recent years.

This story first appeared in the Axios Twin Cities newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.


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