For those who hate German supermarkets

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The whole idea of a supermarket is that it is a convenient one stop shop where you can buy a few fresh tomatoes, a slice of tunafish, select from 6 or 7 types of Olive oil, maybe buy a baguette or onion loaf, and perhaps a pre-made curry with nan bread, a fresh prawn and mayo sandwich for lunch, and perhaps a small selection of sushi for dinner

Yes it is. But the German attitude towards shopping is not the same. Germans like to shop around and will go to several places to get their weekly shopping. That is one of the reasons Walmart failed in Germany. They tried to push Americans ideals onto a country that was, in no way, going to accept them...

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@Crawlie,

 

I just added the same thing.

 

As far as I know...but things maybe have changed, it is the same in Spain and Italy. I think we forget it was also so in the UK in the 70s...great big supermarkets selling everything is actually a recent innovation...or regression (if you preferr).

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Ah right. Sorry. I read a report about the Walmart failure. Will see if I can dig it up.

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On my way back from my municipal gym in London..I decided that I'm glad there are differences...can we imagine German being the UK or the UK being germany...

 

Let's hope the German supermarkets keep on being german!!! Diversity is king...even if it means varying results...

 

Not sure I believe that but I'm happy to write it at the moment... eh eh

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Yeah Stanford it is partly due to planning laws.

 

Interestingly enough there is a problem in the UK with the large retailers effectively abandoning a large section of ther poorer population, particuarly in the inner cities and on urban estates who can't get to shops.

 

You don't see that in Germany I don't think.

 

A LOT of the better shops in the UK are effectively only acceable by car too, which has implications for the way society operates.

 

I'm all in favour of justified critique but it has to have some foundation.

Like I'm gonna find sushi and six or 7 varieties of olive oil in my local working class KwikSave in the UK?

Yeah right! :lol:

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:lol:

 

You would be lucky to find anything in your local Kwik Save...last time I worked for then they had a no-name brand.. and that was about it... na ja kept us Northerners going for a few decades at least...

 

As for me at the moment, I've got a local Budgens next to me in Eastcote (London)...it is okay but nothing special (a few too many cakes and crisps and no sushi, sun dried tomatos nor great olive oil!!! take the last part with a pinch of salt..since I don't shop to cook in London..no cooking facilities in my B&B...

 

My last other local was in Basingstoke a Sainsbury which was huge but was dirty and had such a low range of products...did make me wonder as a poor Northern. Since my memories was that Sainsbury was middle class with middle class cleaniness and product range...maybe that was the case in the eighties or maybe it's just the one in Basingstoke centre that was shit...

 

As for reasoned criticism, I hear what you are saying but living abroad never seems to include the reasoned part of it...

 

PS. I do love the new Metro Tescos which somehow have a great range dispite having a small shop space...and they have innovated with the checkouts... But overall one day I want to be a Waitrose man...then I know I have arrived... B)

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W00t! Eastcote posse roolz mate, I used to live there innit! B)

Never got Budgens as a store really, they are quite big around there I know.

Seems to dear and not a huge choice, more convenience store really.

 

I dunno, I think cos I've been in Germany a fair while you kind of get into the local rhytim of things and take a more balanced view rather than the culture shock I think a lot of the supermarket complainers are in.

 

As for Basingstoke. All that needs to be said is that its a step up the ladder to head to Reading! :lol:

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You and me too - I don't get Budgens as well!!!

 

As for cultural thang..I think I've been doing this living abroad and moving between the UK for over 10 years now - so after a while you stop fighting it (not every - JN!) - things swing in roundabouts...there's a bigger picture even with supermarkets... (what about the smaller shops the farmers and if they become Monsters like Walmart/Asda/Tescos every highstreet starts to look the same)...

 

So in the end...I always try to look on the bright side of life...even if I can only get rotten tomatos!!!

 

PS. a trick is then to use the tomatos to make 'Pan con tomato'...i.e. rub the bread with the shitty tomato put a little bit of olive oil, salt and pepper on it. And then A. you have lovely bit of bread justing waiting for some super Jamon and B. you've NOT spread tons of margine or butter on the bread killing the taste nor putting your health at risk and C. you've not wasted your rotten tomato.

 

Stanford Oliver...

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The German retail food market is VERY price competitive.

I beg to differ. The German retail food market is just VERY competitive when it comes to being crap. If you go to a supermarket they just sell merchandise which is not cheaper overall compared to neighboring countries. Have you made price per pound/kilo comparisons? If items are more expensive abroad it's simply because they are superior quality, however "normal" goods like meat, vegetables, etc. are comparable.

 

The alternative here to "supermarkets" is these wonderful small shops that that everyone raves about where prices are, understandably, much higher than what you get abroad for merchandise which is frankly acceptable quality, nothing more.

 

For everything else there's Dallmayr... <_<

 

 

pre-packaged ready meals like these is in the UK.

I can't speak for Johnny English, who is a true guru and inspiration when it comes to the unrelented wanton bashing of German supermarkets, however pre-packaged meals are just the tip of the iceberg.

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At the end of the day, you get what you pay for. You pay next to nothing and you will get a load of crap with god-knows-what in it... Supermarkets put so much pressure on farmers to produce cheap produce whenever they want it, regardless of it being out of season or not that you cannot really expect an awful lot now can you? People don't give a toss whether what they are buying is in season or not. They want it now and will not accept anything else.. So, you get crap at a reasonable price.. They will rarely sample locally grown, in-season produce so, as far as they know, that is how it is supposed to taste... Short cuts are being taken and our health is being put at risk. Ask the families of those in the US who died due to the E-Coli problem in package spinach. They will tell you...

 

Seeing as my situation has now changed at home, I have become even more vigalent when shopping and am prepared to pay that little bit extra to ensure the produce I cam getting has not been treated with chemicals... It has taken this to make me more aware but it is worth it...

 

You really do get what you pay for

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I have become even more vigalent when shopping and am prepared to pay that little bit extra to ensure the produce I cam getting has not been treated with chemicals... It has taken this to make me more aware but it is worth it...

I agree I pay extra for organic, but in my book it is well worth it when I am in the states. When I am in Regensburg I buy from a guy based out of the oberpfatz country side. His stuff is right on but a bit more expensive also. Sadly though he is forced out of the main platz during xmas season so I dont get fresh fruit, but a bunch of drunk bavarians :lol:

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I agree I pay extra for organic, but in my book it is well worth it when I am in the states.

Whenever I can (not very often as it is a 2 hour round trip), I head to market just off 101 outside Davis. They sell local produce only at ridiculously cheap prices. Honestly. The quality is absolutely amazing. People that happen to stop by really do keep going back for more. The tomatoes are actually red on the inside! And at 59 cents per pound you cannot go wrong... Shame it is not any closer...

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When you and Winegirl come to oregon you will find it local and cheaper than California. I should clarify my statement from the previous post though . When I am forced time wise to buy supermarket brand organic products it is expensive, when I have free time going to the local market stands it is fresh, cheap, and wondershon.

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Yep. We even avoid Safeway now. If we need a supermarket then we use Trader Joes and the like

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Minimal are pretty good actually, but generally the others are pretty hopeless. My local Penny Markt only has about 4 people working in it so it often means that either they stack the shelves or open an extra till, they can't do both. Saturday mornings are the worst, their busiest time and they don't have enough staff to keep the 3 tills they have permanently open, so we get huge queues. Still I suppose more staff means more costs which means higher prices, i.e. Britain!

Sorry but every supermarket I have been to here makes me feel like I 'm in a maze looking for the way out. :angry:

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Another thing that you get with german supermarkets is the pfaffing around now with returnable plastic bottles. Kept waiting while the people in front fumble around reaching deep into their cotton "Umwelttüten" taking out one plastic bottle after another to hand to the cashier. On the whole I cant say I enjoy visiting any supermarkets, be they german, british or any other. But I particularly avoid those small corner ones be they ALDI, Plus, ReWe or whatever. The aisles are just too small, everything is pokey and squashed up, it makes the customers ratty and irritable, you get more trolleys bashed into you, and the whole experience is horrible. I make a point of going an extra couple of kilometers out of my way to find a large-scale supermarket where you can at least find a minimal level of shopping "comfort".

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I dunno, I think cos I've been in Germany a fair while you kind of get into the local rhytim of things and take a more balanced view rather than the culture shock I think a lot of the supermarket complainers are in.

Well I've been here since Pontious was a pilot and I still think most of the supermarketes are crap, I exclude the Minimal on Domagstrasse from this 'cos I'm impressed with it and have started to use it a lot. My eldest daughter works on a Saturday in a supermarket in Holland and she was here last week and noted how scruffy the supermarkets are, and also how grumpy the staff are. She said that if she acted towards the customers like they do here, she would be fired! I'm usually pretty positive about life in Germany, thats why I've lived here so long, but they have a long way to go before their supermarkets can be regarded as good.

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What are you lot bitching about??? Get our meat directly from a butchers on the farmyard,Veg is bought at the local farmers market you can haggle about the prices.Hardly ever use supermarkets,you could do all this back in blighty.You just have to look around and speak the language.

What is the point of moving to another country and wanting it all to be like back in blighty.

Only thing wrong with supermarkets here is they have no good deals like BOGOFF's

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I have been in Germany for about 4 years in total and I have to agree on the crappy standards of customer service here. Completely agree that you have to go to different places to get the best stuff...my partner and I go to the wine shop to buy our wine, then to the bakery to get our fresh bread and cake (cos one particular bakery is superior to all!) and then to the supermarket for the other stuff. The worst thing is the queuing system...anyone can walk up to the meat counter and get served although there is a queue! What happened to the numbering system?!?! :angry:

 

I think customer service is just not seen as being so important generally and I think the Germans working in customer service have some kind of chip on their shoulder cos they have to be nice and civilised to ppl...Germans are used to feeling superior though arent they?! (ref. WWII)!! And where else in the world do you walk into a restaurant and sit yourself down?? Not all places are bad I must admit but the general feelign is there...I hate going to my local ALDI cos the woman at the till scowls as she asks for my money!! We have a Boni here in Witten which is a little better (but also more expensive) but again there are moulding infested tomatoes left out for us to stick our hands in ewwww!! :unsure:

 

But the Germans are really not bothered about quality of food...or else all the discount supermarkets wouldn't be so popular here. I like good food too and I miss the choice of exotic foods (!!) like sushi and being Chinese, there is a serious lack of decent Chinese food!!! Hmmmm...

 

Best solution: just group together and open our own brand of supermarkets!!

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