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French supermarkets and grocery stores

Updated: Sep 10, 2022

Are you savoring the flavor of French culture? Discover how to recreate those mouthwatering French sensations right in your kitchen with our comprehensive guide to the supermarkets and food markets of France.

From baguettes to beef bourguignon, it's fair to say that France is heaven on earth for anyone who enjoys good cuisine. Finding all of these scrumptious tastes at your neighborhood grocery shop is unquestionably one of the high points of daily life for foreign nationals living in France. There is a wide variety of novel foods and beverages for customers to sample purchase, and fall in love with, and the shelves and counters are brimming with these items. Going to the supermarket won't ever again seem like a bother.

However, if you are moving to France from another country, it may be difficult for you to understand how supermarkets are organized and which food stores you should visit.

British Corner Shop

Feeling homesick for your favorite cuisine from the UK while you're in France? Stop by British Corner Shop right away. Their online shop carries all of your favorite brands, in addition to numerous goods from well-known grocery chains in the UK, such as Marks & Spencer and Waitrose. You can stock up on British goods today at British Corner Shop, which has everything from crumpets and custard to tea bags and sweets.

Grocery shopping in France

When you first arrive in France, one of the places you will most likely go is to the grocery store, regardless of whether you are in Paris or Perpignan. It's likely that as soon as you step through those doors for the first time, you'll get the epiphany that supermarkets in France aren't the same as those in your own country. However, this should not deter you from stuffing as much as possible into your shopping basket.

Do you despise going to the grocery store? You are in luck since you do not have to be in France to do grocery shopping because there is a long list of other places where you may get the items you need. These include specialized stores, local fresh food markets, and meal kit delivery boxes sent right to your front door. And if you don't feel like doing any cooking at all, your neighborhood restaurant, café, or bar is likely to provide you with a satisfying meal.

Supermarkets in France

The first thing you should know about supermarkets in France is that they come in a wide variety of configurations and sizes. If you live in one of the larger cities like Paris or Lyon, you will most likely find smaller shops located in the core areas of the city. These provide all you need in terms of food, but they do not sell much more after that.

Supermarkets and hypermarkets are common features of suburban and rural locations. You'll find them there. These may be found in outlying areas that are readily reached by automobile due to their convenient location. A bus stop is likely to be located in the vicinity of the business as well. These shops are considerably more compared to the sort of supermarkets seen in North America; they offer everything from apparel and electronics to homeware, in addition to a vast selection of fresh food and drink options.

In general, the prices in supermarkets in France are not too high, especially outside of the locations that are considered to be city centers. You will also have a wide range of options to choose from when it comes to merchandise. The majority of them also have bakeries on the premises, and they are well-stocked with fresh food and dry goods of high quality. You will also come across in-store discounts and specials, which will allow your money to stretch even further.

French supermarket chains

Even though there are still some regional differences, France has a variety of supermarket chains, and most of them operate throughout the country. As a result, you may not have access to the full assortment available to pick from in your immediate vicinity. Some of the most well-known grocery chains in France are as follows:

Carrefour: The French retailer is a member of the ranks of the largest supermarket chains in the world. It has more than 5,000 retail locations across France, ranging from little shopping centers to sprawling hypermarkets in less populated areas.

Intermarché: There are approximately 2,000 Intermarché shops around the nation, so it's quite unlikely that you'll ever be too far away from one, regardless of whether you're looking for a supermarket or a hypermarket.

Leclerc: The principal adversary of Carrefour operates more than 700 supermarket and hypermarket locations around the country. Although most of them are located outside of major cities, Leclerc is the largest food store in France according to market share.

Super U: The Super U family of shops consists of over a thousand establishments and is owned by the cooperative of French merchants known as Système U. This comprises both larger hypermarkets known as Hyper U as well as the smaller convenience shops known as U Express.

Auchan: Auchan, which specializes in larger-format shops, may be found throughout France with both hypermarket and supermarket locations. The majority of stores are situated in areas that are considered to be outside of the city.

Monoprix: The quality of Monoprix's items, from everyday foods to its fashion line and home furnishings, is excellent; although its prices tend to be on the pricier end of the spectrum. The stores of Monoprix are also of a size that customers find to be quite comfortable.

In addition to Leader Price, Casino, and Match, there are a great number of additional grocery chains located across France. The location has a significant role in determining the accessibility of these retail establishments.

Discount supermarket chains in France

Over the last decade or two, bargain merchants have gained popularity in France, just like they have in many other nations throughout Europe. The following are some of France's most successful discount supermarkets:

Lidl: Although the German discounter is just the seventh-largest grocery chain in France, it nonetheless has over 1,500 locations throughout the country. Low pricing is offered on a limited selection of products at each store.

Aldi: Another German discounter that operates in France, Aldi has over 900 outlets throughout the country. In the same vein as Lidl, it sells fresh food in addition to unique non-food things.

French specialty supermarkets

If you are looking for a more specialized shopping experience while in France, you may want to consider going to a specialist supermarket. These retailers have more specialized product selections and include the following:

NaturéO: The organic retailer operates over 50 supermarkets throughout the United States and is anticipated to continue growing in the next years. A variety of fresh and dry organic items may be found at stores.

Biocoop: The organic retailing cooperative spans the country with more than 600 locations. In every region of France, these shops are known for carrying organic, regional, and seasonal cuisine.

M&S Food: Marks & Spencer, a British department store, has opened several food-only stores across the city of Paris. These stores sell a variety of delicacies from around the world in neighborhood settings.

The hours when French supermarkets are open to customers

In contrast to supermarkets in other nations, those located in France have resisted the pressure to keep their doors open around the clock. Instead, most establishments, regardless of size, will often open at about 8:00 in the morning and remain open until approximately 20:00 or 21:00. In places with a greater population, supermarkets often remain open for longer periods.

Be conscious of the fact that the majority of France's supermarkets are closed on Sundays. Some will be open in the morning but will shut at midday. This indicates that you will either need to do your food shopping in advance or give yourself the gift of a nice lunch out on Sunday.

Things you need to know about French supermarkets

Before you go grocery shopping like a crazed person at a French supermarket, there are a few things you, as an expat living in France, need to be aware of beforehand. The following is a list of items to bear in mind:

● Check those opening times: Be aware that the operating hours of supermarkets in France may differ from what you are used to preventing getting hungry while you are there. Most stores are closed on Sundays, however, some do remain open for business on Sunday mornings.

● Prices can vary: Some grocery stores operate on franchise models, which means that each location is free to choose its pricing structure. This indicates that costs may be different amongst outlets of the same brand, especially during the busiest season for tourists.

● What exactly should you be downloading? Find out with our rundown of the top French mobile applications here.

● Bring your bags: French supermarkets, like those in many other European nations, do not provide plastic shopping bags to customers. You may either bring your bag or purchase one at the register to use again and again.

● No medicines or tobacco: You won't be able to get any medication from a French grocery store; for that, you'll need to visit the pharmacy down the street. They don't offer tobacco goods either, so if you want to buy any you'll have to find the closest tobacco shop.

Grocery delivery services in France

You are in luck if you are unable to get to the store in your area or if you just find it more convenient to have your groceries sent to you at your home. The vast majority of grocery stores in France provide customers with the option to pick up their orders either in the shop or have them delivered to their homes. You may just do your shopping online and choose a time for either delivery or pick-up.

There are several more methods of distribution available in France. These come in the form of meal-kit recipe boxes and food boxes sourced from nearby vendors. Both of these may be delivered straight to your front door. You'll be able to make your meals at home with the help of these recipe boxes, which include items that are at their peak of freshness during the appropriate season. Providers of meal kits in France include the following:



Ethnic grocery stores in France

Because France is home to such a diverse population, the country's towns and cities, as well as their surrounding areas, are home to a huge number of supermarkets specializing in ethnic foods. These stores carry a considerably greater variety of foreign foods than ordinary supermarkets do, including delicacies from North Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, amongst other regions.

When compared to the costs of groceries in some of France's bordering nations, the prices at French supermarkets are, on average, rather reasonable. However, some residents and foreigners feel that these ethnic grocery shops are significantly cheaper than ordinary supermarkets, especially when it comes to the cost of purchasing delicacies from other countries.

Food shopping at French markets

Don't feel like making your way through the aisles of your neighborhood grocery store in France? Then why don't you make your way to the closest food market? One of the most alluring aspects of living in France, in the eyes of a great number of foreign residents, is the possibility of spending time browsing the stalls at local markets. And it doesn't matter where in France you end up settling down, you'll almost certainly discover that the neighborhood market becomes an integral part of your daily routine there.

The majority of different types of booths may be found at marketplaces. Others will carry locally produced meat and dairy products, while yet others will offer fresh fruit and vegetables. You may be able to locate more specialized goods and services in bigger cities, such as international foods and groceries or even international textiles, clothes, and household goods. Don't forget to bring a tote bag with you to the grocery store or farmers market when you go so that you can load up on all of those tasty delicacies.

Specialty stores in France

Another wonderful advantage of relocating to France is the abundance of fantastic regional boutiques and specialty shops that you will quickly come across in your new neighborhood. And just as you would presumably anticipate from France, there is a lot for you to get your teeth into. You can discover freshly prepared meat at la boucherie, freshly caught fish at la poissonerie, chocolate at le chocolatier, and, of course, all of the French cheese you could ever want at la fromagerie.

Need a French bank account?

The local bakery, which is often referred to as la boulangerie, is naturally the first place that a lot of people who have just moved to France will want to go and check out. You may choose from a wide variety of freshly made bread, including pains au chocolat, croissants, and many more options here. If the bakery near you does not offer cakes, you will have to go to the patisserie that is located the closest to you.

Convenience stores

When you're in a rush, the only option you have is to get a bite to eat as quickly as possible. You may do this in France by going to the convenience shop that is most convenient for you. The vast majority of these establishments are managed by their owners on their own, and you can find at least one of them in most neighborhoods. On the other hand, several chains operate throughout the country, such as:

● Carrefour

● Monoprix

● Spar

● 8 à Huit

Liquor stores in France

When compared to the prices in many other European nations, those in France for alcoholic beverages are quite low. The majority of the community's alcoholic beverages, including beer, wine, and spirits, are purchased from the area's supermarkets. There is going to be a significant amount of variation in the price of wine, but the local beverage will almost always be the least expensive. 18 is the minimum age required to purchase alcohol in France.

As a result of the easy access to alcoholic beverages, the American-style liquor shop is not extremely prevalent in France. There are not even a handful of bottle stores spread over France. If, on the other hand, you are interested in exploring the local alcohol scene, you will discover a large number of wine shops, local brewers, and other establishments. You may also look at the expanding number of internet stores that sell alcoholic beverages, such as:

● Beerwulf

● Drinks&Co

You will be able to locate an extensive variety of beers, wines, and spirits from all around the world, including France, here. After placing your order, all you have to do is wait for your preferred beverages to be brought to your front door.

Buying groceries from your home country

Do you long for the meals from back home? When it comes to delicacies from other countries, French stores have, thankfully, a good selection to choose from. Many stores have a limited selection of items originating from the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, and other countries farther abroad. You may also find foreign grocery shops in bigger cities, such as the several M&S Food outlets that are located in the city of Paris. You'll be able to purchase a more extensive selection of goods made in other countries here.

Explore international grocery stores in our directory

On the other hand, if that isn't sufficient, other online grocery shops can send your preferred groceries to locations outside of the country. This includes the British Corner Shop, which is focused only on selling products originating from the United Kingdom. Consult the entries in our database to choose a company that offers delivery to your new residence.



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