Most have seen the unsettling findings behind what health inspectors discover inside local grocery stores.
From bugs and dirt, to unrefrigerated meat and outdated milk, News 2 decided to check out the other side of things: Nashville grocery stores with high health inspection scores.
News 2 examined the biannual inspection reports for each of the 900 Nashville grocery stores for the past two years.
“We do inspections to make sure the food is safe and the food is from an approved source and that it is handled properly,” Steve Crosier with the Metro Health Department said.
The top five of all time scored a 96 or better out of 100.
“We check cooking temperatures, cooling temperatures, make sure they are holding foods at proper temperatures,” Crosier added. “Make sure employees who handle food are washing their hands and make sure food contact surfaces are sanitized.”
The findings may surprise some.
There is no Kroger, Publix, Walmart, Food Lion or Piggly Wiggly.
Coming in at No. 5 is the Madison International Market on Gallatin Road. Their 2-year average score is 96.5 out of 100.
Next at No. 4 is the Target on Charlotte Pike. It’s 2-year average is 97.5 out of 100.
The Target at North Gallatin Road also made it to the top five at No. 3 with a score of 98 out of 100.
No. 2 was yet another Target store, this time on Old Hickory Boulevard in Brentwood. The store got a 98.5 out of 100.
The overall winner? The Harris Teeter on 21st Avenue in Hillsboro Village with a 2-year average score of 99.75 out of 100.
Shoppers were happy to hear the news.
“Great, I’m happy. I shop there all the time,” said Eric Carlin.
“Well, it makes me feel good about my local neighborhood store,” said Chris Green.
But how important are these scores? Unless you see problems when you’re in a store, the scores are all you’re going to get.
Kroger and Publix would not let News 2 inside to show what inspectors found, and neither would Harris Teeter despite getting the highest inspection scores across Nashville.
The Harris Teeter home office in Charlotte, North Carolina even congratulated the Hillsboro Village store for its excellent results.
How can you find the scores? Grocery stores are not required to post them, but they have to make them available upon request.
You can also check with the Metro Health Department. For contact information, check their Web site.