Costco Food Database Review Methodology

Creating a rating system for Costco foods was without a doubt one of the most fun and interesting aspects of this website. The goal was to create a review system that could be applied to every food item sold at Costco while balancing the rating scale to make it fair for all food types and categories. E.g. How could we accurately and fairly compare carrots to cake. 

The Categories

We decided to go with a 50pt scale broken down into 6 separate categories – Value, Convenience, Taste, Nutrition, Uniqueness, and our personal subjective CFDB score. 

4 of the Categories are worth 10 pts each – Value, Taste, Convenience, and Nutrition. The remaining 2 categories of Uniqueness and the CFDB score are worth 5 points each, bringing us to a total of 50 points.

One challenge that we had to solve was how we would accurately compare a carrot to a cake. Would a terrible tasting cake score higher than a great tasting carrot? Or if we really enjoyed the carrot would that score a 10 out of 10 while a mediocre cake would score a 6? Could a carrot really outscore cake in a taste rating? The same applies to nutrition. Would a carrot always score high with a cake scoring on the lower end?

Overall and Relative Rating

In order to help balance it all out, we broke down our 10 point categories into 2 separate 5 point categories. For each category we are going to award 5 points for their overall rating and 5 points for the relative rating. For instance with Taste, food items can earn up to 5 points for their Overall Taste, as well as 5 points for the Relative Taste compared to similar items. 

For Overall Taste, we compare foods across all product types throughout Costco. Chicken Nuggets will be compared against everything from a 3 pound pack of bananas to the $99/Pound Wagyu Beef. The Wagyu beef is going to be absolutely delicious and most likely will score a 5/5 for Overall Taste. 

Relative Talue compares foods within their own categories. Beef to beef, crackers to crackers, and nuts to nuts. For instance, I may prefer a Prime Rib Eye over the Wagyu Beef, so the Wagyu Beef may only score a 4 out of 5 for Relative Taste. The total taste score for the wagyu beef will  be a 9/10. 

We apply the same methodology to all 4 of the 10 point categories – Taste, Value, Convenience, and Nutrition. 

It's not Perfect

I hope this provides a clear understanding of CFDB’s rating system. There are some flaws, especially in regards to convenience and nutrition, but this gives us the best opportunity to rank and compare all of Costco’s offerings. 

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