Hong Kong’s supermarkets are dominated by two chains: Park-n-Shop and Wellcome. Although they may bear different names, most of the grocery stores frequented by residents on a day-to-day basis are actually operated by one of these two companies (or more accurately, their corporate owners).
Shoppers looking for Western foods and ingredients will commonly notice labels from UK chains like Tesco (at USelect), Sainsbury (at Wellcome) and Waitrose (at ParknShop), as well as French brands Casino (at ParknShop) and Monoprix (at Marketplace by Jasons and Oliver’s).
All grocery chains offer home delivery over a certain spending amount, and most also have online ordering services (see Online Grocery Delivery below).
A&M US Groceries
Although modest in square footage, A&M (in Central and Stanley) is stuffed full of imported American pantry and household goods in the Costco-esque bulk sizes you miss and love.
Local grocery store/convenience store hybrid 759 sells mostly imported goods from Korea and Japan. Their outlets tend to be concentrated in more “local” neighborhoods across Hong Kong.
City’super is a high-end grocery store known for its imported specialty ingredients and premium products not typically found in most Hong Kong supermarkets. The supermarket forms just one component of each City Super outlet, which also includes lifestyle store LOG-ON, and a cooked food station called cookedDeli.
Gateway American Supermarket
Like A&M, Gateway (in Central) specializes in brand-name goods imported directly from the United States, ensuring that ingredients, recipes and formulations are exactly the same.
Marks & Spencer Food
Hailing from the UK, M&S Food is a staple for many expats, featuring clearly sourced fresh fruit and vegetables, excellent breads, ready-to-eat and frozen convenience foods, moreish snacks and party foods, and more.
ParknShop (including International, TASTE, Great Food Hall, Gourmet, Fusion)
ParknShop is one of Hong Kong’s largest and leading supermarket chains, which, in addition to its own brand, operates different store formats to cater to a spectrum of customer needs. While ParknShop caters to more local tastes, its other stores — International by ParknShop, Taste, Great Food Hall, Gourmet, and Fusion — offer a wider variety of international goods and fresh produce.
uSelect is a joint venture between Chinese grocery chain Vanguard and UK supermarket giant Tesco; as such, they offer an interesting mix of Chinese and Western ingredients and products.
Wellcome (including Market Place by Jasons, Oliver’s The Delicatessen and 3hreesixty)
Founded in 1945, Wellcome is Hong Kong’s largest and oldest grocery store chain, owned by the Dairy Farm Group. Just like ParknShop, the Group also operates a number of other supermarkets with more international offerings, including the more upmarket chains Market Place by Jasons, Oliver’s The Delicatessen and 3hreesixty (Hong Kong’s largest organic and natural food store).
Japanese grocery chain Yata is known for its seasonal sales, super-fresh Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese produce, and incredible selection of frozen seafoods and meats.
Online Grocery Delivery
The following stores offer online ordering and delivery of groceries:
- Great Food Hall
- Marks & Spencer Food
- Marketplace by Jasons
Meal Delivery Companies
The busy working and social lives of Hong Kongers don’t always leave them with enough time or energy to prioritize a healthy, nutritious diet.
Fortunately, there are a number of healthy meal plan delivery companies in the city who will deliver individual meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner to your home or office, with special packages tailored to your fitness and nutritional goals.
The word halal (meaning “permissible” in Arabic) refers to anything that adheres to Islamic law, as defined in the Koran. When applied to food, halal refers to meat that has been slaughtered according to certain standards, minus pork and alcohol, which are both forbidden. Even pork by-products, such as leather, may not be used.
There are a handful of restaurants and stores serving and selling kosher food in Hong Kong. The Jewish Community Centre on Robinson Road, which services the city’s three main synagogues has more information on its website and Facebook page. The JCC also operates a members-only kosher grocery store.
The United Jewish Congregation of Hong Kong holds a Shabbat dinner every Friday night at 7pm.
AKJ Wine specializes in kosher wine from Israel and also offers food and gift baskets.
It’s easier than ever to find organic produce in Hong Kong; virtually every supermarket has an organic section and even some wet markets have organic stalls (look for the characters “有機”, pronounced yauh gei).
Be advised, however, that much of the local organic produce comes from China, where there is still no strict regulation regarding certification of organic farms.
Organic Food Stores
In addition to 3hreesixty in ELEMENTS, one of Hong Kong’s largest suppliers of organic and natural foods, there are numerous small specialty purveyors now selling organic produce, eco-friendly household products and high-quality gourmet meats and fish. Here are a few:
If you’re looking for a safer veggie option but are concerned about the price or environmental impact of flying in organic vegetables, check out the “accredited farm scheme” run by the Vegetable Marketing Organization (VMO) and the government’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department. Their website has a list of retailers in wet markets and supermarkets that sell produce from “accredited farms.” These vegetables are not organic; the accreditation merely signifies that the farm’s produce has been tested for excess pesticide residues. You can also order vegetables directly from VMO.
Another good source of organic foods is one of Hong Kong’s increasingly popular zero-waste stores. Bring your own jars and reusable bags, or take some of the freecycled glass jars dropped off by other consumers, and stock up on pantry items like grains, beans, nut butter and oils.
Hong Kong has several seasonal outdoor organic produce markets, which operate periodically throughout the year. It’s always best to check their websites for dates and hours of their next market. These markets sell locally produced vegetables fresh from the farmers’ fields, including green vegetables, eggplants and cucumbers. Organically farmed chicken, fish and eggs are also available from small local producers.
The farmers’ market experience is quite different from the United States and Europe — there’s no central organizing arm like you’ll find in New York or London, and the produce is obviously geared toward the local climate, tastes and recipes. But as long as you manage your expectations, shopping at these markets offers a great way to keep your diet healthier and your carbon footprint in check.
The biggest and longest-established markets are to be found in Central, at the Star Ferry terminal, and Tai Po, in New Territories. Additionally, the Vegetable Marketing Organization organizes the annual FarmFest in Kowloon, which is the largest outdoor farmers’ market in Hong Kong.