The average consumer represented in this year's survey by America's Research Group, Charleston, S.C., is a mature, married individual, well educated, with income in the middle to upper-middle bracket.
ction declined to give their ages.
It is an educated group: 94% said they had a high school education or better. The majority of consumers, 66.8%, were married and from a stable locality; 44.2% said they have lived in their local community for more than 20 years.
When it came to head-of-household occupation, 32.7% classified themselves as white-collar; 29.6% were retired; 27.2% were blue-collar, and 27.2% said they were self-employed. The remainder were either students, homemakers, government employees or unemployed.
Combined income for 83.2% of consumers ranged between $24,000 and $74,999. Only 6.2% had total income over $75,000. For the remainder, income either fell under $6,000 or consumers refused to answer.
Consumers were interviewed by telephone in nine regions of the country, with 17.8% reached in the South Atlantic region and just 5.3% reached in New England.
Respondents in these various regions were asked to name the shopping format they felt had the best overall HBC department in their geographic location. They were also asked to name the supermarket chain they felt had the top HBC department. Following are the results of those questions: Wal-Mart and Publix Super Markets (South Atlantic region); Wal-Mart and Meijers (East North Central); Wal-Mart and Safeway (Pacific); CVS and Pathmark (Middle Atlantic); Wal-Mart and H-E-B (West South Central); Wal-Mart and Casey's (West North Central); Wal-Mart and Kroger (East South Central); Wal-Mart and Albertson's (Mountain), and CVS and Big Y Foods (New England).