Mika
 member, 289 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:24
Supermarket verses grocery store
This is really confusing me.  If anyone can put in easy terms Iíd be very happy!

For me a supermarket is any store that sells foods and things to eat. Alcohol as well as daily life things.
Is a grocery store different.

In japan everything is just super スーパー meaning supermarket. I thought grocery was the same but maybe only England people used it. That both words were the same meaning just for different countries.

Some say Walmart is a supermarket.

In japan itís all separate!!! Home goods, super, pet shops, and so on.

Itís a silly question but I really and VERY VERY curious.

Am I allows to ask this?
tmagann
 member, 670 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:34
Supermarket verses grocery store
In reply to Mika (msg # 1):

A grocery store is a store that sells food and things, usually including beer and wine, and, depending on state law, distilled spirits. What you are calling a supermarket.

A Supermarket is a BIG grocery store.

Not all grocery stores are supermarkets. Some of them are corner groceries, especially in Urban settings, rather than suburban. And sometimes in Rural settings, where the big store is a bit of a distance away.

Selection is usually much better in a supermarket. More brands, simply because there is more shelf space. Variety (flavor, rather than manufacturer) of items, as well, is better in a supermarket for the same reason: more shelf space for more choices.
Mika
 member, 290 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:38
Supermarket verses grocery store
In reply to tmagann (msg # 2):

Anything smaller for me is called a コンビニ or convenience store. We have vegetable only abs meat only shipped but something of that small is just a store!!!!

This is why I probably hated visiting America nothing made sense!
tmagann
 member, 671 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:38
Supermarket verses grocery store
Oh..and Walmart? That's a Department tore. They only added grocery sections a few years ago. Walmart was first, as I recall, but several others have done it since. At least one in my rural town actually has a supermarket inside the department store, but most I've seen are usually just basic grocery stores.
tmagann
 member, 672 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:44
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Mika:
This is why I probably hated visiting America nothing made sense!


Yeah, well, a few things didn't make sense  to me when I visited Japan, either, like speed boats attacking an air craft carrier, or whiskey in vending machines where children could buy it.. Different cultures have different ways of doing things.
Mika
 member, 291 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:48
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
In reply to tmagann (msg # 5):

Kids canít buy it you need a special card called TASPO so no children canít get it. THOUGH any age can look through the naughty 7-11 magazines if the workers were busy.

Japan is strict and maybe because you could not read Japanese you couldnít read the vending machine rules no child can buy. I think you just didnít understand kanji
Mika
 member, 292 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 02:50
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
In reply to tmagann (msg # 5):

I found enblush for you! It should help you understand not everyone is elegible to purchase the item for many reasons abs so on

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Sh...refecture_Kanto.html
tmagann
 member, 673 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:11
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Oh, It's quite possible. All we bought from the machine was batteries. But that's my point: Our stores are varied, and our vending machines are not. Your stores are rather specific but your vending machines have batteries and whiskey in the same machine. Rather varied.

And that's my point: different cultures do things differently, and they don't always make sense to strangers. Accepting and adapting makes for a much more pleasant travel experience.
drewalt
 subscriber, 112 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:33
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Having spent an embarassing amount of my life in American big box retail I am about to get really, really nerdy about this and yet also not really define anything either.

Grocery store and supermarket are mostly interchangeable terms.  It's one of those things like Coke vs. soda vs. pop, the preferred term depends on where you are.  Whichever word you use, people will generally not be confused.  Again this is from U.S. perspective.

However, it's also one of those situations where every square is a rectangle but not every rectangle is a square.  There are "grocery stores" which are not supermarkets.  They tend to be smaller stores, are more likely to be independent stores or part of a small regional chain (not part of a large chain like a supermarket typically is), and often, but not always, specialize in a particular kind of food or cuisine and often sell products you can't typically get in a regular store.  Two examples:
  • Near where I live, there's an organic grocery store that specializes in locally produced foods and organic convenience foods.  But this store is very small, they only sell a few products and you couldn't go there and buy all your food for a week unless your eating habits are very peculiar.
  • Where my extended family lives, in a small rural town, there's only one store that sells food, and it's relatively small, and it sells very basic staple foods, and no one calls it a supermarket.  But you can buy a week's worth of food there easily enough.


Wal-Mart, at least when I worked there, called itself a discount retailer and saw groceries as one of several "lines", each composed of different departments.  The store I worked at considered itself a Wal-Mart store, but it considered the grocery departments (freezer, bakery, meat, produce etc.) together to be the store's "supermarket".  So per Wal-Mart, the store it was not a supermarket but it had a supermarket.

I would think most people would call Wal-Mart a discount retailer, a general retailer, or a discount department store, but some people would call it a supermarket and none of those people are wrong honestly.
facemaker329
 member, 7274 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:35
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Mika:
This is why I probably hated visiting America nothing made sense!


This is, I think, the basic underlying premise of "culture shock".  You (not the OP, necessarily...this is a more collective "you") are so indoctrinated in how your culture does it that seeing someone else do it another way feels alien and you reject it.  And that fan color your whole experience.  And it's not just other countries...it can be different regions of the same country--if you grew up in NYC, visiting a part of the US that doesn't have public transit within walking distance can be very foreign.  Living in a suburban town that largely closes shop at 9PM can set you up for culture shock if you visit Las Vegas, where half the city is just hitting its stride at 9 pm.

It's all about how you process the difference.  If you keep saying "That's not right, it doesn't make sense, I don't understand, I don't like it", you suffer significant culture shock.  If you just kind of roll with it and try to adjust and adapt, you'll still get some culture shock, but your overall experience will be far more enjoyable.

I mean, I got lucky when I visited Sweden.  I grew up in a pretty conservative area of the United States, so I was mentally braced to see a lot of things I wasn't used to seeing.  And one of the first things I saw, walking out of my apartment to the bus stop on my first day in the country, was the front page of a tabloid paper, with an article about a popular American televangelist who'd been busted in a big sex scandal, begging for his congregation to forgive him.  And I realized, "Okay...they're not so different here, after all..."

If I hadn't seen that first, the twenty-foot-tall condom advertising billboard I saw right next to the bus stop would have had a far more severe impact on my perception of the country...
Mika
 member, 293 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:40
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
In reply to drewalt (msg # 9):

I thought super and grocery meant the same thing and got screamed at because I thought it was!!!!! I feel happy knowing Iím not stupid there.

I will say my home is strangers too! They sell novelty things that make us go why are they being a shame to us all. We all have that group. I know most hear strange about my home but we all do not have  panty vending machines everywhere but drink machines are everywhere!
drewalt
 subscriber, 113 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:49
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Mika:
In reply to drewalt (msg # 9):

I thought super and grocery meant the same thing and got screamed at because I thought it was!!!!! I feel happy knowing Iím not stupid there.


That's very strange to me anyone would actually care which term you used.  The only situation where I can imagine someone wanting to correct you is if you had one of those examples I used where you had a grocery store that was clearly not a supermarket.

But even that's really touchy.  There's a store in the city I live in that specializes in foods from Mexico and to a lesser degree Latin America in general that some people might call a grocery store because it's specialized and doesn't sell all the things a typical American supermarket might.  But the store calls itself a supermarket, which makes sense to be because you could easily buy a week's worth of nutritious food there, it's just the food of a different culture.
Mika
 member, 294 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 03:56
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Iím now scared to me STI on anything becarse it might be wrong to them! I hope they never visit japan because people will tell thrum they are wrong too!
ranna
 member, 69 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 04:10
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
Supermarket = big store
Grocery store = small store

This message was last edited by the user at 04:26, Sat 28 Nov 2020.

Mika
 member, 295 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 04:16
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
I think I need to be careful saying trash can, trash bin, garbage can, garbage bin, trash and garbage unless those are all different things too!
Mika
 member, 296 posts
Sat 28 Nov 2020
at 04:20
Re: Supermarket verses grocery store
If they are the same things you buy food how can anyone say differently?

I was scolded strongly and warned to use grocery but I still canít get the difference. They both sell foods and things to live >.<