Bangkok Grocery Stores and Food Shopping
The grocery stores in Bangkok Thailand have just about everything you want from health foods to
the good old junk food. Bangkok has many centers with lots of grocery stores, so you can buy just what you want for those picky types of taste or ethnic variety. In Bangkok there is no shortage of food be it volume or variety and there specialty food shops for everything.
Villa Grocery Stores Bangkok
One of the best grocery store chains is the Villa Market, here you can find anything. They are spread all over Thailand from Bangkok to Nonthaburi. A little expensive, but the Villa Market Groceries include both imported and domestic grocery items. This is a family owned business and there is one at Central World Mall, The Emporium Mall,Samsen Nai Phaya Thai,as well as in Silom. Just search on google for a location of this market. The food quality is good and rates high for having good meats, a very nice wine selection and fresh seafood. As example they will purchase their chicken from non steroid or hormone sources. We did find some of the stores a little disorganized and most of the staff was found to be helpful.
Another favorite grocery stores are Foodland and Tops market, they are great for foreigners in finding what they like to eat. For those that like to shop traditional chains, western superstores are all over Thailand from Bangkok to many of the other provinces. These stores remind me of the good old American Wal-mart store, which Thailand does not have. Their locations at: Ladprao, Ramintra, Patpong, Srinakarin, Petchaburi, Hua Mak, Sukhumvit and even Pattaya. It has been said the Foodlands are a favorite with the Muslim community, why? Not sure. The good thing about Foodland is they are open 24 hours a day. They have a great American breakfast and many items for westerners. We like the one on Sukhumvit 5 as the staff was very nice and helpful. The prices seemed to better than some of the other stores.
We found the Big C across the street from Central World Mall towards Petchaburi Road to be the best for our shopping. It has a lot of quality and quantity reminds us of a Costco to some degree. The foods were the usual variety at most chain stores with a lot of Thai brands which are the least expensive to buy. They also have some floors with other household goods and cleaning solutions and the like. This one burned down during the Red Shirt Uprising but was recently rebuilt better than before. There are a lot of other vendors located here aside from groceries such as gold sellers. This Big C has Mcdonald’s, StarBucks and Dairy Queen. This type of arrangement is common at many large grocery shopping centers in Bangkok.
Like the Big C the Tesco, a French chain, usually found housing many other vendors and specialty stores. The one at Fortune center accessible by the MRT at Rama 9 is one example. They have all of the brand names food , full selection of meats local and foreign grocery items. There prices are reasonable and staff is helpful.
Other Grocery Stores
Bangkok Thailand also has several other kinds of grocery outlets for the Japanese, the British and the French.Of course there is the famous seven-eleven store which number in the thousands almost on every other street. Almost all the malls have a gourmet grocery outlet bearing the exotic fruits and vegetables such as middle eastern figs and dried fruit
Premium Grocery Stores
Premium grocery stores are cropping up both with storefronts and home delivery shopping.
There is even a Dean & Deluca (a Manhattan favorite) located at Praditmanutham Rd., Lat Phrao, Bangkok 10230. Siam Paragon, Gourmet Market, Lemon Market, all offer great options for imported and premium foods. Healthy ‘clean food’ or ‘farm fresh to table’ is becoming very popular lately.
Home Delivery Groceries
FoodPanda, HappyFresh, Helping Hands, Even Tesco, and Tops are a few of the many services popping up for home delivered groceries. Service fees are minimal and you typically pay roughly 20-30% higher (for premium stores) than going out to the store yourself. With everything considered; travel time/traffic, shopping time, travel expense, it is a viable solution for Bangkokians
Grocery History Lesson
During the Vietnam war several of the Villa markets went out of business but in the 1970’s they made a come back and now there are plenty of them in the country. In 1997 the Asian economy collapsed and the WTO (Organization, of the World Trade) negotiated and rules were set to open the market of Thailand’s grocery stores to foreign companies. In at which time it pushed some of the smaller companies out of business. By doing this when Thailand was in an economic crisis weakened the country some more. Eventually it did come back to once again collapse in the 2000’s. The European chains were racing each other to get their stores up all over the Bangkok and the Thailand country. Big C, Tesco, Carrefour, Makro were some of the top companies to do so. Some stores merged with each other. Thailand’s Central grocery store merged with Robinson’s, and to day they are one of the top superstores of Thailand.
Big C and Tesco are the big leaders as far we believe. These are excellent and you can find anything from western to middle eastern taste. There are several of these in Bangkok.
If you want really upscale food and deli type food of all variety try the Big Malls like Paragon and Central world. They all have supermarkets similar to safe ways and better inside. These are definitely suitable to western taste in Bangkok.
Health Food Stores Bangkok
There are plenty of health food stores all over also. A lot of these tend to be family owned for generations of time. They provide a variety of foods from vegetables to other great nutritious products.There is also the chains such as GNC and the Vitamin Shops. You can always find these at the big malls.
Some Grocery Tips
In buying vegetables and fruits from Thailand, everything is weighed and then priced right there in the produce department. Then they stick a sticker on it and you can then pay for it at the checkout counter.
Some foods are more common like cheese from New Zealand, frozen mixed vegetables, margarine made out of sunflower and canola oil, whole grain breads, and lots of other things. Seafood, chicken, steaks, pork are all quite common to Thailand. Several food companies and the Thailand government have been working hygienic meats, in where they inspect for hormones levels and other antibiotics with participating farmers.
The chickens for eggs have carefully controlled feedings in order to get them rich in omega-3’s.Its easy to find chicken that is not hormone fed or even free range chicken in Bangkok.
Those that don’t like skim milk have the chance to buy Meiji brand. It tastes much better than the regular milk.
Fruit juices are carefully blended to get the healthiest ingredients in them such as vitamin b2, b1, E, A and of course taste is always important. It’s really easy to find fresh juices, orange, tangerine, pomegranate and melon etc.
Chocolate is to die for in Thailand. Yes they even have chocolate for all those chocolate lovers and many companies that make it as well. The best thing about the Thailand’s chocolate is that it is only 40 percent sugar instead of what most chocolate is 80 percent sugar.
You can find anything you want at most local grocery stores. Have fun and go shopping for food in Bangkok.