Large supermarkets in or near Heidelberg

Recommendations for monthly stock-ups

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Tallmillan
Hallo! We are moving to HD this summer and we are finding it difficult to find a good hypermaket or supermarket that is not expensive and has a larger variety of products in HD or in a periphery of 30 min.from HD. We are used to large supermarkets in Sweden and use to do monthly stock-up shopping (for ex. sugar, washing powder, meet, frozen vegetables). And where do "normal income" Germans go for grocery shopping? Because from my short experience in HD the prices of food are high.

Thanks!

Elizabeth
kato
Traditional hypermarkets in the area within 30 mins:

- Kaufland, Heidelberg-Rohrbach (former Famila mall: Famila-Center HD) (trashy)
- Kaufland, Heidelberg-Pfaffengrund (former Grosso hypermarket) (trashy)
- Kaufland, Weinheim-Center (former Famila mall: Multcenter Weinheim) (trashy)
- Real, Edingen-Neckarhausen (near A656) (even more trashy)
- Real, Brühl (former Walmart) (on A6/B36) (even more trashy)
- Real, Mannheim-Vogelstang (former Walmart) (on A6/B38) (even more trashy)
- Real, Mannheim-Sandhofen (on A6/B44) (even more trashy)
- Marktkauf, Mannheim-Wohlgelegen (on B38) (expensive)
- Marktkauf, Mannheim-Neckarau (on B36) (expensive)
- Marktkauf, Weinheim-Lützelsachsen (on B3) (expensive)

Most Germans buy their groceries at supermarkets in their neighborhood though - hypermarkets are an idea that died in Germany twenty years ago (which is why Walmart bailed out again that fast when they tried to enter the market). There are over 30 chain discounter supermarkets within Heidelberg proper spread around most suburbs of the city (ie the various chains owned by Aldi/Rewe/Schwarz/Edeka) and probably another 200-300 markets of their ilk within 30 mins of Heidelberg.

Regarding price, there's a rank order among the discount supermarkets in the area, with Lidl being the cheapest, Aldi and Penny coming second and Edeka and Rewe being comparatively pricey. Selection expands in exactly the same order - unless you want to eat the same every week don't shop exclusively at Lidl, Aldi or Penny.

Of the above hypermarkets, Real is cheap but i wouldn't exactly trust their food items (in particular meat that's 50% off from an original price that's already damn cheap...). They're not bad for non-food items though. Kaufland is the midrange, medium-scale selection on a level with Rewe or Edeka (for supermarkets) with similar, occasionally cheaper prices and what can probably be called similar quality. Famila used to have a far broader selection (and better quality) but sold out to Real last year, so they're no longer an option. Marktkauf is owned by Edeka and has similar high prices, albeit with - in my opinion - the best selections in the area short of the B2B markets that aren't available to end customers (Metro, Fegro, Edeka C&C in the area).

In addition to the above there's a handful non-discounter chain or non-chain niche supermarkets in Heidelberg all of which are even more pricy than Edeka and cater to specific audiences - Füllhorn, Alnatura, couple others.
tor
We are used to large supermarkets in Sweden and use to do monthly stock-up shopping
the only thing the regular German does once a month is have sex...on a Saturday, around 21:15, after the clothes have been folded.
liebling
Am guessing you're used to having lots of space to store a month's worth of shopping. Sigh. Perhaps you're more fortunate than most of us, and will have it in Germany as well.

Germans not only buy at neighborhood shops, as Kato mentioned, they also shop often, as in several times a week. I find the grocery carts at most of the supermarkets (including Rewe and Kaufland) to be too small for more than a few days' worth of food and other items (at least for my family), so if I need to actually stock up on, say, a week's worth of stuff, I need two or three carts. Coming to the cash register with one cart (let alone two) filled with stuff is bound to earn you anything from the usual sighs and stares to sneers and a telling-off (how dare you want to buy so much stuff when other people want stuff, too, and heaven forbid they should have to wait an extra 60 seconds - see other threads for the gory details of German supermarket culture).

Not a hypermarket but the Fritz-Frey-Strasse commercial center in Handschuhsheim has lots of discounters (a large Rewe, Lidl, Aldi, plus a DM drugstore and Fuellhorn organic market), so you can pick the best from all of the above without having to go to those trashy hypermarkets. (And yes, they *are* trashy. As much as I like to save money, I just can't bear them. They're grim!).
kato
There are a couple new larger supermarkets planned in Heidelberg btw. The two new blocks they're building on Kurfürstenanlage (where they're currently tearing down the old state court) will include a 3,000 m² Edeka, probably under their E-Center brand. And sometime next year they're gonna start on the Nahversorgungszentrum Rohrbach, a 6,000 m² supermarket center centered around a 3,400 m² Rewe and a 1,200 m² Aldi with the rest of the space taken by a number of smaller shops. If you're living in the exurbs down south, Wiesloch is currently building a similar center of the same size centered around a Rewe supermarket and a Promarkt electronics shop. If you're in the Schwetzingen area due west the new Kaufland near the train station might qualify with 3,300 m² too.

I find the grocery carts at most of the supermarkets to be too small for more than a few days' worth of food and other items
In my opinion the shopping carts are good for a week for a family of three or four (only few people in the area shop for bigger families, so it's a demand thing). Provided you're not packing it full of diapers or stuff like that. Which also is the traditional average turnover cycle for most Germans - saturday morning buy for the next week, during the week mostly perishables.

(And yes, they *are* trashy. As much as I like to save money, I just can't bear them. They're grim!).
I pretty much only shop at Real when i have to. Job-related bulk buys or some special offers usually, couple times per year (last time it was for 90 liters of Volvic - shopping cart almost broke down). Mostly skip out on it because it's not really worth the gas unless i'm passing by one anyway.

The Real shops were built in the late 70s / early 80s, and regarding their design etc they've noticably stayed in that period - and in the case of Brühl and Vogelstang that's despite Real only buying them five years ago (in fact the current design is more dreary than the one Walmart had in there, and more dreary than the one Massa and Wertkauf had in there before Walmart...). New Reals - like the one in Sandhofen, or a couple of those in Ludwigshafen - are bearable, relatively modern even.
Kaufland is mostly a no frills affair along similar lines as Aldi or Lidl. People tend to interpret that as cheap for some reason, even though that's not the case for either of them (except Lidl); at least unlike Aldi or Netto Kaufland doesn't present its wares on pallets...
Tallmillan
Thanks! Yes, in Sweden most of time you will have a full size freezer and a size refrigerator. Thanks about the commercial center in Handschuscheim, that could be a good alternative as we are trying to find a place in Neuenheim.I can probably take a trip there tomorrow.

But another question...where do you by meat, fish etc? Because my experience of for ex. Lidl is that the meat is not that good.
And where do you go for diapers? We have a almost two year old girl that is potty training at the moment, but she will need diapers a little bit longer. In Sweden we buy Libero, can I find this in any supermarket or just in some and at dm?
kato
Meat: Rewe, Kaufland* or local butchers. In Neuenheim there's Unger on Brückenstraße and Blatt on the corner of Werderstraße and Ladenburger Straße; if you think supermarkets in Germany are pricy, you'll get a heart attack at the butchers' prices though. Rewe has a shop-in-shop concept with a butcher chain called "Brandenburger" that's owned by them and mass-produces. With Kaufland the selection tends to be not exactly fabulous, but unlike Lidl, Aldi etc you can actually buy real meat there. If you want whole pig halves or something like that go to Real.
Alnatura sells meat with a supposed organic source and so on for similar prices to the butchers, but with the butchers you at least know the animals lived locally. If that's important for you.

Fish: "Nordsee", if you can stand the prices. Fish shop in the Markthalle in the back of Kaufhof on Hauptstraße (edited: the one at Famila-Center closed when Real took over). Alternatively market stands, with some caution. Frozen fish from Rewe is usually alright too. South Germany simply don't eat much fish, so there's not that much demand for it.

Diapers: SCA (the makers of Libero) only sells adult diapers in Germany nowadays (under the Tena brand), since the baby diaper market is too competitive. If you absolutely need Libero order them online from somewhere in Sweden or Denmark.

* i've never bought meat from the higher-priced supermarkets, i.e. Edeka/Marktkauf, so i couldn't tell in that regard. Avoid Lidl and Aldi when it comes to meat, and be careful at Penny (since Penny is owned by Rewe they occasionally sell repackaged, still good Rewe meat products, so they tend to be slightly better).
Thomastut
When we were living in Heidelberg we liked the Rewe nearest the Altstadt, (REWE, Kurfürsten-Anlage 6, Heidelberg)

And just a few km away in Eppelheim there is another one (REWE, Seestr. 71, Eppelheim)

We thought the standards there were better than the Lidls, Kauflands, Reals in other Cities.
kato
The "Rewe City" on Kurfürstenanlage is impossible to use with a car in my opinion - at least if you don't want to pay parking fees on a grocery run. It's selection is also limited compared to other Rewes. And, especially just before 10 pm (alcohol closing hours), it tends to be cramped like hell with hundreds of kids overrunning it.
liebling
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liebling
In my opinion the shopping carts are good for a week for a family of three or four (only few people in the area shop for bigger families, so it's a demand thing). Provided you're not packing it full of diapers or stuff like that. Which also is the traditional average turnover cycle for most Germans - saturday morning buy for the next week, during the week mostly perishables.
Yes, it's definitely a demand thing - not only are people not shopping for as many people, they're also shopping more frequently. We're a 5 person family, three in diapers and cannot shop more often than once a week, so you can guess how much shopping cart space we need. At least 2 carts every time (and that's if we don't use any of the cart space to actually hold our kids). I have on occasion had Rossmannversand deliver our diapers to the house, but prices are better elsewhere. (For the person who asked - there are threads on TT about diaper prices including one with a very helpful chart comparing prices by size, manufacturer, model/style, and store - search for that.) We drink about 35 liters of milk a week, too, so it's not just diapers that fill up the cart lickety-split.

As for butchers, I really like Juergen Muessig in Handschuhsheim (Steubenstr. 55), but everyone has their specialties so it depends on what exactly you're looking for, what's convenient, etc. I like Muessig since their meat seems very good indeed and they have often accommodated my special requests (trying to get or approximate the "foreign" cuts I asked for, excellent made-to-order Weisswurst, and more).

Rumor has it that a big new supermarket is planned for Neuenheimer Feld, across from the Bunsengymnasium. The city is said to have given planning permission for a hotel, underground parking, and a supermarket (to replace a parking lot there now). Would be fab - especially if it's a full-service Edeka - but I've heard no confirmation, only rumor.
PezMom3
Oh man, 3 in diapers, liebling? I want to hug you I've noticed more child friendly carts at Edeka and Rewe recently in Leimen. Good and bad because my children fight over who gets to sit in it. Or they fight over those little child carts, there's always drama whenever we go to Rewe. But of course those carts are pretty small, though.

Thanks for the tips on butchers, liebling!
kato
The city is said to have given planning permission for a hotel, underground parking, and a supermarket (to replace a parking lot there now).
That's several separate projects actually. They're planning ten separate buildings there, one of them being the hotel and another being a "Quartierszentrum". Four of the ten buildings could include retail in their ground floor, two would be suitable for supermarkets of about 2500m².

See Anhang 1 here - A1_Entwicklungskozept Berliner Straße, the 4 MB brochure. Very detailed, 62 pages with plans and models.

That brochure is from 2008. By now the city has decided to host a IBA urban planning expo (Theme: "Wissen-schafft-Stadt"), and the development on Berliner Straße will be integrated into that - alongside the conversion of US Army housing and barracks, the Bahnstadt and Campus II developments and the expansion of EMBL/MPIK on the mountain part of which was signed off last year. That expo - during which these projects would be realized - would last from ~2013/14 to ~2019/20.
kato
probably another 200-300 markets of their ilk
Can quantify that now: Just within the "Neighborhood Association Heidelberg-Mannheim" it's already 169 supermarkets and hypermarkets. This area encompasses the two cities along with their exurbs north of Wiesloch and south of Weinheim, between river and mountains.
Melina
Hi!

There are no Libero diapers here in Germany - only Pampers and various house brands. Our daughter is 6 months and will need diapers for quite some time still. Libero is the best for her, Pampers gives her a flaming red rash. We've tried several local brands such as Babylove (DM) and Toujours (Lidl). None of them is good for her. So we bring Libero diapers from Finland and use them at least at nights.

I haven't found a web shop that would sell Libero diapers. If you do, please do tell me!

The variety of baby foods is also much smaller here than in Finland (and I suppose Sweden as well). I suppose most parents cook the baby food themselves. The biggest brands are Hipp and Bebivita.

Hoppas at ni trivs här i Tyskland i alla fall! :-)
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