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ST. PAUL, Minn. — Convenience stores are uniquely equipped to meet the needs of Americans on the go, according to an infographic published by Cenex, a division of CHS Inc.
Every day, one in two Americans walks into a convenience store, the report, authored by Brian Thraen, CHS' payment solutions product consultant, revealed. One of every $25 spent in the United States is spent at a convenience store.
Hence, c-stores always intersect with consumers’ daily lives. This is especially true as 246 million cars are on the road, about one for every 1.25 Americans. This compares to 80,000 cars on the road in 1905, or one vehicle per 1,000 people.
In addition, consumers often have no choice but to visit convenience stores, the Cenex report noted. There are currently more than 152,000 convenience stores in the U.S., more than dollar stores, supermarkets and drugstores combined. These 152,000 convenience stores combine for a total of $700 billion in sales annually.
When it comes to their namesake, c-stores are truly the pinnacle of convenience, the infographic added. The average visit to a c-store lasts just three to four minutes, with the most time (71 seconds) spent picking out an item, followed by 44 seconds spent leaving the store, 42 seconds waiting in line, 35 seconds walking from the car and 21 seconds paying for an item.
And although some consumers believe other types of food purveyors offer more variety, c-stores hold their own quite well, offering more than 2,000 items for sale. In fact, c-stores sell 23 million of cups every day throughout the country, enough to span the entire length of famed Route 66, the report revealed.
Convenience stores also continue to be the main source for consumers when filling up their gas tanks. The average convenience store pumps more than 4,000 gallons of gas per day, enough for a car to drive around the world four times. The average U.S. vehicle can travel 23.6 miles on one gallon of gas.
Data from NACS, the Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing, was used to help compile the Cenex report.
St. Paul-based Cenex has more than 1,400 c-stores throughout the country. Cenex is a division of CHS, a farmer-owned cooperative that provides energy, grains and foods.
The infographic can be viewed in its entirety here.