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NEW YORK — The coronavirus has made daily life extremely hard for many American families; especially when it comes to buying essential goods. With product shortages around the country and fears of getting COVID-19 running high, the local grocery store is a very different place in 2020. A new survey finds most Americans may not even return once the pandemic ends.

The study, commissioned by HelloFresh, says nearly 70 percent believe the traditional run to the grocery store is a thing of the past, thanks to COVID-19. The poll of 2,000 Americans finds 68 percent are reevaluating their shopping habits during quarantine.

Avoiding grocery stores and the virus

“As we’re all adjusting to this new normal, it can be difficult to find a new way to fulfill all of your grocery shopping needs,” Claudia Sidoti of HelloFresh says in a statement.

Researchers say the nation’s quarantine is pushing more Americans to have their daily needs brought right to their doors. The OnePoll survey finds 64 percent of respondents are having groceries delivered. To avoid extra time outdoors, another 58 percent say they are pre-ordering groceries online and opting for curbside pickups.

When it comes to cooking, 55 percent say they are trying pre-measured meal kit services while in lockdown. Sixty-one percent are skipping the cooking all together and just order food from local restaurants.

The supermarket’s swan song?

The pandemic isn’t just affecting what’s going on inside your grocery store, it’s also changing how Americans approach their trips out of the house. The survey finds the biggest challenges facing shoppers during the COVID-19 outbreak are empty shelves. Forty-four percent of Americans say they can’t get the things they need in stores.

For the items still available, over 40 percent of respondents say they worry about how clean those products are. Nearly 30 percent of shoppers add they get anxiety when they have to enter a grocery store during the pandemic.

With all this in mind, researchers find consumers are spending much less time browsing the aisles. In May, respondents spent an average of 23 minutes grocery shopping compared to 32 minutes in February. Over a third of the poll say they’re also making fewer impulse purchases.

Four in 10 Americans add they’re now planning out exactly what their family needs so they can spend the least amount of time inside the store.

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About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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