Canadians Turn to Costco and Walmart Amid Loblaw Boycott Survey Highlights Shifting Grocery Habits

Canadians Turn to Costco and Walmart Amid Loblaw Boycott: Survey Highlights Shifting Grocery Habits

Canadians turn to Costco and Walmart amid the Loblaw boycott. The survey highlights shifting grocery shopping habits and public sentiment.

A Shift in Grocery Shopping Habits

A recent survey revealed that Costco and Walmart have become the preferred alternatives for Canadians participating in a boycott of Loblaw stores.

This shift follows rising frustrations over grocery prices and perceived corporate practices.

Survey Insights: Canadians’ Grocery Shopping Preferences

Leger, a prominent market research firm, conducted a comprehensive survey to understand Canadians’ grocery shopping habits during the Loblaw boycott.

The survey, conducted online from May 17 to May 19, 2024, included responses from 1,519 participants.

Survey Results

Survey DataPercentage
Support the Loblaw Boycott58%
Oppose the Loblaw Boycott23%
Participate in Boycott18%
Continue Shopping at Loblaw43%

Rising Costs and Public Frustration

The boycott originated from the subreddit Loblaws Is Out of Control, which now boasts over 86,000 members.

This group, led by Emily Johnson, has called for reduced grocery prices and other reforms.

Johnson highlighted the distress caused by grocery prices rising beyond the inflation rate, mainly targeting Loblaw and its president, Galen Weston Jr..

“Seeing groceries — an essential that nobody can avoid paying for — rise beyond the inflation rate is upsetting many people,” said Emily Johnson, the creator of the subreddit, in March.

“Because Loblaw is one of the most prolific grocers in the country, many people have placed most of that frustration onto Loblaws, especially Galen Weston Jr. himself.”

Alternatives to Loblaw

Primary Choices

When asked about their alternative shopping preferences:

  • 40% of respondents now shop at Walmart and Costco.
  • 31% prefer other chains like Sobeys or Save on Foods.
  • Only 23% are turning to independent local grocers.

Public Sentiment on Boycott Fairness

Diverse Opinions

Despite the boycott’s popularity, 48% of respondents believe that singling out Loblaw is unfair.

This sentiment suggests a nuanced view among Canadians about targeting specific grocery chains for broader industry issues.

Opinion on Boycott FairnessPercentage
Singling out Loblaw is unfair48%
Neutral/No Opinion29%
Singling out Loblaw is fair23%

Ongoing Efforts and Industry Impact

Extended Boycott and Industry Changes

The subreddit group has extended the boycott indefinitely, citing ongoing issues and the perceived impact of their actions.

Loblaw recently signed the Canadian Grocery Code of Conduct in response to the pressure. Loblaw’s president and CEO, Per Bank, emphasized the collaborative efforts to draft a fair code.

“We have worked intensively and collaboratively with industry groups so that the Code is drafted and fair for all industry participants,” said Per Bank.

Challenges with Code Adoption

Notably, neither Walmart nor Costco signed the voluntary code, prompting Johnson to petition these companies to commit to ethical business practices.

The petition underscores the responsibility of major retailers like Walmart to maintain fair industry standards.

“We believe that Walmart, as one of the largest grocery retailers in Canada, has a responsibility to uphold fair practices in the industry,” reads the petition.

“By signing the Grocer Code of Conduct, Walmart would show its commitment to ethical business practices and fair treatment of suppliers.”


The Loblaw boycott reflects a significant shift in consumer sentiment and behavior, with many Canadians turning to Walmart and Costco.

While the boycott has sparked debate about fairness, it has also prompted discussions on industry-wide practices and ethics.

As the situation evolves, how grocery giants will respond to the call for fair practices and consumer demands remains to be seen.

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