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If learning a new language isn’t daunting enough, navigating German grocery stores adds a whole other level of complexity. So we gathered all the best spots so you don’t have to. Here’s our guide to German grocery stores so you can shop like a local.
The sections are conveniently divided between supermarkets, online supermarkets, discount stores, hypermarkets, organic supermarkets, and more!
Nothing feels more elite than Edeka. And to take that shopping experience to a whole new level you’ll have to visit Düsseldorf’s flagship store on Berliner Allee 52. From a champagne bar to cheese for days, you’ll believe that anybody can become a chef and foodie all in one grocery store visit. Enjoy the spacious shopping area of 12000m2 and 2 floors filled with a wide range of more than 60.000 products. It’s not just grocery shopping, it’s an exclusive day out, of high-class living.
Simple, reliable, and always available, Rewe sets the foundation of German grocery store shopping. Often small in dimension, not offering the luxury of Edeka’s superstore shopping, but with access to everything you could need. Rewe with about 3,300 stores, is the second-largest food retailer in Germany.
Nothing says savvy shopper like the grocery stores below. What they lack in a bit of structure, or range of items, they make up for in price.
Sure, when I feel spontaneous and adventurous, Netto doesn’t always have what I need. One day there will be fresh basil the next day only a shadow of what once was, remains. But, you know what it always has? Bread, milk, eggs, a bottle of wine, and good prices. Netto is a German discount supermarket chain owned by the supermarket cooperative, Edeka Group.
Grab some apples, a pair of pants, coffee, and a bath mat all in one aisle. Enjoy the suspense of never knowing what to expect, because every Lidl store is different. Love it or hate it, it’s the largest discounter group in the world with its promise of lower-cost quality products. Ensuring groceries, toiletries, and general household items are available to all means Lidl will continue with its popularity as the world seems to continue to get more expensive.
Lidl, Aldi, same, same, but different. Lidl shares strategies with Aldi, products sold out of shipping boxes instead of on shelves, and streamlined inventory. They were both founded in Germany and are major competitors. Due to irreconcilable differences in business management and operations, it split in 1960 into Aldi Nord, headquartered in Essen, and Aldi Süd, based in Mülheim an der Ruhr.
As with any discount store, we simply want to buy our blankets with our bananas. And Penny is no different. Penny, or internationally known as Penny Market, is a German-French discount supermarket chain based in Germany. Penny Markt is part of the REWE Group. It operates more than 3,550 stores in Germany and several other European countries, with a focus on providing affordable groceries and household items. The company prides itself on offering a wide range of products, including many organic and sustainable options, at low prices.
Well, who would of thunk it? Another discount store. One I didn’t even know existed until a little road trip through Germany uncovered it. With over 1,450 stores across several countries, Norma is a discount store that operates primarily in Germany. Offering a wide range of products, including groceries, electronics, and seasonal items, it often comes with lower prices than many competitors. Norma is known for its commitment to sustainability and social responsibility, with initiatives to reduce waste and support local communities. Win! Despite smaller store sizes than competitors like Aldi and Lidl, Norma has built a loyal customer base through their focus on providing high-quality products at low prices with added focus on sustainability.
Vacuum cleaner, chocolate, a tv, and underwear all in one go. If that’s your style of shopping, where everything you could ever need is available in one convenient store, then look no further than Kaufland. With lots of selection, great promotions, and everything you need, Kaufland is truly shopping like a local. Like Lidl, this full-range food retailer is a subsidiary of the Schwarz Group.
METRO – Membership Only
It’s like a cool club you have to be invited to. Only the elite know it even exists (or the self-employed).
METRO is a leading international food wholesaler and operates in 31 countries. The Düsseldorf based network comprises a total of 661 stores in 22 countries. So why is it members-only? METRO is all about supporting entrepreneurs and is specifically geared toward the hotel, restaurant, and catering industries. So if you’re self-employed or an entrepreneur sign up with METRO to take advantage of wholesale prices.
Bio-Supermarket (organic supermarkets)
Ok, we see you. Thinking about the future of the world, having enough respect for your body to shop organically.
Alnatura is an organic supermarket with more than 6,000 organic products. They sell organically produced food to retailers and drugstores under the Alnatura brand and they own their own organic supermarket chain, Alnatura Super Natur Markt. When you make that smart purchase you can also know you’re supporting valuable initiatives relating to organic farming and animal welfare.
With 340 stores, it is the largest organic market chain in Germany and Austria. This organic supermarket chain, where independent organic markets all over Germany have joined forces, guarantees sustainably produced food. On a mission to change the way we think about the products we buy, they pride themselves on 100% organic produce with fairness in partnerships and production.
This family-run business was one of the first organic shops in Germany. You’ll find a 100% certified organic range with fresh and regional fruit and vegetables, as well as an extensive natural cosmetics department and an organic bakery department.
Is it bad that I didn’t know there were this many organic supermarkets? This organic supermarket chain store is headquartered in Berlin and operates 66 branches in Berlin, Brandenburg, Dresden, Hamburg, and Leipzig.
Top Tip: You can even buy organic food products while you buy your toilet paper and makeup at DM. DM offers a diverse selection of high-quality organic food.
Imagine -4℃ weather. It’s the middle of January and well, you’ve felt better about your life. The Christmas and holiday seasons have gone by in a flash and you seem to lack the same New Year’s motivation that social media has an abundance of. So the last thing you want to do is spend your weekend and evenings off shopping for the sustenance that will keep you alive. So what do you do? You do what any independent person of the 21st century, digital age would do. You order your groceries online.
Edeka24, Netto, and Rewe all offer delivery services, but Picnic is definitely a fan favourite here in Düsseldorf.
It’s our regular, our go-to, our ever-reliable. Who doesn’t love a good picnic? Especially when it’s a picnic basket filled with so much choice, nourishment, and convenience. Picnic is a Dutch online supermarket founded in 2015. Simply download the app, select what you need from A-brands to household brands to fresh fruit to vegetables to shampoo, and make sure you reach their minimum order value of only €35. Picnic even offers recipes and helps you recycle. Upon delivery hand over your recyclable bottles, they’ll deduct the money from your final order, and handle the rest. Learn more about their commitment to sustainability and enjoy the freedom of shopping conveniently and ethically.
Online Convenience Stores
Craving a tub of Ben and Jerry’s, just need milk for your morning coffee but you’re feeling lazy, that’s ok, and you’re just not going to meet the online delivery limit, so what do you do? Within the hour, home delivery shopping. Dreams can come true, at a price and always with sacrifice.
With the promise of delivering groceries within 10 minutes, Gorillas is an on-demand, rider-centric grocery delivery store. Cyclists collect your order from a distribution center closest to you and you get your order within minutes. Founded in 2020, this Berlin start-up has gone from owning a single warehouse to 200 warehouses in five different countries, including the Netherlands, the UK, and France. Gorillas has a minimum order of €10 plus a €1.95 delivery fee. You can get free delivery for orders above €59,95.
Contributing to the future of grocery shopping is Flink. A fierce competitor to Gorillas, Flink offers the same service with the same business model. Founded at the end of 2020, Flink currently maintains more than 100 small warehouses in Germany, France, and the Netherlands. They have a minimum order of €10 plus a delivery fee. Between €10 – €20 your delivery will cost €2.99. Between €20 – €49 your delivery will cost €1.99. You can get free delivery for orders above €49.
You are paying for a premium and convenient service, however, Gorillas and Flink sit within the range of the retail price for groceries. You will of course find it can be much cheaper through the traditional grocery route, and you won’t have as much range to choose from just yet. But we can’t ignore how grocery shopping is being revolutionized and embracing the new age of convenience.
This a small reminder that when you don’t want to face the rain or cold evenings the cyclists will have to. So always keep those arriving at your door in mind who continue to offer a friendly and quality service.
You can’t get more German than Flaschenpost. Coming to Germany was the first time I witnessed bulk buying of drinks instantly. Flaschenpost was founded in Münster in 2016 as Germany’s first instant delivery service for drinks. But recently they’ve pivoted to offer more in a bid to increase their competitive edge in this lucrative business of online on-demand grocery shopping.
Flashenpost now offers drinks, food, and even toiletries delivered within 120 minutes. A delivery fee is charged, depending on the order value, with a maximum of €2.90. Flaschenpost hasn’t branched out to the rest of Europe just yet, making it more German than ever. Their main focus is North Rhine-Westphalia but they have 19 warehouses in over 130 German cities and communities.
You can order via their online shop or on their app.
Nothing feels better than waking up on a Sunday, prepping the coffee machine, to only realize you ran out of milk. And on a Sunday there is little hope in recovering your shame of feeling like you’ve failed as an adult. No grocery stores are open, nada, zip (but we do have a few pointers if you’re desperate). With the federal Shop Closing Law confirmed in 1956 and governing according to the principles and requirements of Christianity, Sundays are considered a weekly holiday. Who breaks the rules? You’ll find some local kiosk stores open, or you can hit the main train station. What’s even better? Take a drive to the Netherlands if you’re nearby.
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