Supermarkets in Taiwan

If you’re moving to or have just moved to Taiwan and more specifically in this case, Taipei (as it’s the part of the country I’m familiar with), it can be hard to find certain things, as you’ll most likely not recognize any of the supermarkets here from back home, unless you’ve got Carrefour or Geant (now A-Mart) in your country. Even so, don’t expect to find the same stock of things as you would back home.

People here eat quite different things from Westerners and even other Asians and as such, the supermarkets stock mostly what the locals eat. I’ve compiled a list of all the local supermarkets below and I have written a short description about the ones I’ve been to. If anyone has additional information, please feel free to email me.

Carrefour is the biggest supermarket in Taiwan and as a French company, they stock some imported items, although depending on where you live these things might sell our more quickly than in some other areas and the selection also vary. They have specials at times when they import a selected amount of items from specific countries and they’ve had big drives for US food and Thai food in the past. They stock things like yogurt (although quite expensive and usually not that good), French cheese (again quite expensive), cereal (also quite expensive), a wide range of tinned and canned food and of course French wine. Some Carrefours are open 24h, seven days a week.

A-mart (Previously known as Geant) is another French supermarket chain, but generally it’s a lot more localized than Carrefour and you won’t find the same amount of imported items here. That said, A-Mart is generally a bit cheaper than Carrefour, but there aren’t as many around. A-Mart tend to stock slightly different brands and items than Carrefour and it’s a good place to have a look in if you can’t find what you’re looking for in Carrefour. Again, the various shops seems to carry different items, so just because one A-mart has it doesn’t mean you’ll find it on another one. The larger the store, the bigger chance that they’ll have something a bit more special it seems.

Wellcome is a Chinese supermarket chain and it’s not one I frequent very often. They carry more local things, but have some imported good as well, mainly from the US. As with the larger supermarkets, all branches doesn’t carry the same items, so it’s worth looking around. They do at times carry some hard to find items and are usually cheaper than Jason’s and C!ty’super on those items. Their shops are usually smaller than Carrefour and A-mart, but the advantage is that all of the shops are open 24h, seven days a week.

RT Mart is a local supermarket that has a partnership with French Auchan and as such they carry a fair share of imported goods. They got a lot of own brand import items such as pasta, sauces, etc and it’s all imported from Europe and has pretty good quality. They also carry a small range of organic items. From time to time they also have a lot special time limited imports from both Asia, Europe and the US. RT-Mart also have a large selection of imported beer and alcohol. As with most supermarkets here, the available items will vary from shop to shop, but the one in Xindian is the only one I normally frequent and from time to time they have a lot of good imported goods, but it’s usually not things that are in stock for long, so if you see something you want, get it there and then, as it might not be available next week.

PX Mart is a budget supermarket that has expanded a lot, as they took over a government-run chain of supermarkets as well as a Japanese chain that was called Matsusei. They mostly sell local stuff, but tend to have a few imported items as well. Generally quite a cheap place, but most stores don’t sell things like fruit, vegetables and unprocessed meat.

Taisuco, the Taiwan Sugar company, also has a few large stores in southern Taiwan and  I don’t have any experience with these stores. They’re meant to offer discount coupon books (similar to Costco) a couple of times a year ranging from NT$1,000-3,000 in terms of discount, with with each coupon being worth about NT$100. (Thanks to TainanCowboy from Forumosa for the update). There’s one located near Taipower station in Taiwan, but it looks like nothing more than small Wellcome.

Discount Mart is supposed to be a chain of budget supermarkets. I’ve seen at least one location where they’ve replaced a Wellcome. As it’s a cheaper supermarket, they don’t seem to stock anything unique as such.

Simple Mart is another budget chain which is more of a convenience store than a real supermarket. They do have a lot more food items than 7-11 though, so by Taiwan standards it’s a supermarket. They tend to have the odd imported items and they’re generally price competitive.

For those with a bit more money to spend, there are also some upmarket supermarkets here, although there’s only a few of them, so you’ll have to do some traveling to get there in most cases.

First up we have Jasons, the most well known one is located in the bottom of the 101. They used to have a wide selection of imported food from all-over the world, but the store in the 101 building has about halved in size due to the fact that Din Tai Fong moved in next door and took over a lot of their space, so it’s not as good of a supermarket as it was some years ago. They’re anything but cheap, although if you’re looking for something special, this might be a good place to find it. They’re big on organic and healthy stuff as well and if you have special dietary needs, then this might be the place for you. Don’t bother with the deli counter for sliced meats, as the staff isn’t very knowledgeable and the stock is also quite limited. Sometimes you can score a bargain or two here, especially when they have a promotion or sale going. Recently Jasons has been expanding with multiple new, smaller stores around the island. The company has also taken over a few Wellcome stores in Taipei and possibly elsewhere.

Next up we have C!ty’super which again offers a wide range of imported goods, although more so from Japan, than from other parts of the world. They used to have the best deli counter in Taipei, but the last couple of years things have gone downhill and the selection has halved.  They have a range of imported deli-meats and cheeses, but the selection can vary immensely depending on when they get new stock in. This is also a good place for various other odds and ends such as fancy olive oil, tinned/canned goods and some harder to find baking ingredients. If you didn’t find what you were looking for in Jason’s, this might be the next best place to find it.

Breeze super is as far as I know, a one-off supermarket located in the basement of the Breeze Center on FuXing South Road. This is a Japanese supermarket, but they import a lot of stuff from all-over the world, although most of what they offer is available in Jason’s or C!ty’super. I don’t have a link to a website for them and if you know of one, please get in touch.

Shin Kong Mitsukoshi also has its own supermarkets, although not every store has one. They mainly stock Japanese food, but as with most of these upmarket stores, you can also find some imported items. Recently it seems like their selection of imported items from outside of Asia has shrunk somewhat, possibly due to poor sales.

Then there’s of course Costco which is the place to go to if you have a big fridge and freezer to fill. I’d suggest getting a Costco membership, it’s currently NT$1,350 for a year and you’ll save it on your first couple of trips there. It’s the cheapest place for cereal (bulk size), cheese, meat and loads of other stuff. More recently they’ve also started to carry things like Greek yoghurt and feta cheese and they also have smaller packs of cheese that you might have a chance to finish before it goes moldy. You can also get other useful things here like bread makers, small ovens (ovens aren’t a common household item in Taiwan, but more on that another time) and just about anything else you could need for your kitchen. Costco has recently (in 2014) updated their website and is posting all their special offers on the website now, in both Chinese and English. It’s also possible to shop online, but you need to have a Costco branded credit card to do so and it might be easier to get blood from a stone than to get one these days, as Cathay United Bank took over the credit card partnership some years ago and they normally won’t give credit cards to non Taiwanese.

IKEA also stocks a certain amount of imported Swedish food, although the selection isn’t huge, it is a great place for us Scandinavians to go when we have a craving for something from home. That said, more and more stuff from IKEA is no longer made in Sweden, but rather by whatever partner IKEA wants to work with and branded IKEA. The store near the Taipei arena (inside Asiaworld) usually sells out really quick, so if you’re trying to get hold of something special, you might want to try to get to one of the other stores. They normally stock things like tunnbröd, polarkakor (or at least an IKEA version of it), knäckebröd, kaviar (not seen that in years), jam, frozen meatballs and a selection of Swedish sweets and crisps. Lately (as of 2018) they’ve also had Swedish cheese, various snacks, sweets and various seasonal specials. They also have a selection of Swedish cider, beer and alcohol. This is also the only place to get Julmust when it’s that time of the year and they’ve even sold frozen crayfish.

HOLA is a local version of IKEA to some fashion and they also sell a few food items, mostly imported things and you can find some bargains there at times. They have various size stores and the larger ones usually have a bigger selection of grocery items. It’s also a place where you can pick up a lot of other kitchen items, like pots and pans and various kitchen tools. They merged with the local B&Q equivalent (which used to be B&Q once upon a time) a while ago, hence the odd website.

Another place that I have yet to visit that sells food in bulk is PnP food which seems to stock a lot of specialty items. They normally sell to the hotel and catering business, but they will sell to walk-ins at their warehouse address which can be found on their website. They will also order in special things for you, but be prepared to order large amounts at a time.

There are also a lot of local baking supply shops which can have a lot of specialty items. One of the better ones, at least if you’re looking for things like fresh yeast, rye flour and other things for making bread, would he a place called JiaYuan Food in Xindian.

Other places to do your shopping in are convenience stores, there are more 7-11’s in Taiwan than in the whole of the USA and no less than 9,100 of them spread across the country with more opening all the time. Then there’s of course FamilyMart, Hi-Life and OK Mart. You can do a lot of other useful things in convenience stores in Taiwan too, like pay your bills, parking fees and collect C.O.D. packages etc. Most of the convenience stores also have an ATM. To find your local shop, either look out the window or head over to Google Maps where most of them tend to be listed these days.

It’s also worth visiting your local “wet market” which might have many of the items you’d want, especially fruit and vegetables which can be of much better quality and at lower prices than what you’d get in the supermarkets. Local stores can also stock various hard to find items and I found that a very local little vegetable and what not shop near where I lived stock beetroot when it’s in season, although these days it’s quite common in most supermarkets. The flower markets might also be good for fresh herbs and things like chili plants, although you’d have to have space to put the plants somewhere.

This post was last updated on the 14th of September 2018

35 thoughts on “Supermarkets in Taiwan

  1. Very helpful list Swede. I would like to emphasize the PX Mart stores. They are very reminiscent of a goof neighborhood market. The more you shop with them the more you discover how useful they are. And their prices are consistently lower. Good, and ever increasing, range of items. Yes, no fresh vegetables or meats selections, but they have fresh eggs, sometimes organic, and fresh milk and dairy items. Also wide rice, noodles and grain selections.
    No, I don’t work for them, but I do shop there very often.
    Membership is free;and the discounts add up quickly.

    Also wanted to mention that the RT Mart membership is free. They have 2 stores here in Tainan and we shop them both depending on where we’re at when we’re out & about.

  2. ahh.. i’m totally linking to this! i was not even clear on a lot of the other supermarkets, but this is very helpful

  3. Holly :

    Where can I buy bacon and canned white beans in Taipei?

    Well, that depends, bacon is tricky, as far as I’ve seen, you can only get the streaky kind here. Costco has a selection in bulk packaging, Jasons and City Super has some imported stuff, most supermarkets carry bacon, albeit local and very fatty. Carrefour carries a brand of bacon with a Swiss flag on that’s quite good, nice flavour and not too fatty, but a bit more expensive than the regular local stuff.

    Beans, try Matsusei, they tend to have HP beans for a reasonable price, otherwise Jasons or City Super.

  4. Stumbled across this site by accident while looking for the deli menu for Costco. Very nice & useful list of supermarkets; thanks!

    Just wanted to add that the Florida Bakery has a small selection of imported goods as well, and fairly good bread and cakes too. Their website is http://www.bread.com.tw
    When I first visited Taiwan back in 1979, Florida Bakery was probably the *only* place to get western goods, such as cereals or Doritos potato chips. The original store is still there on Zhong Shan North Road, and they’ve since then opened another branch on Ren Ai Road (in-between Fu Xing and Dun Hua).

    On a side-note, there’s a small store at the southeast corner of the Zhong Shan North Road and Min Zu East Road intersection (can’t remember the name of the place, but it’s near the Burger Queen) that is primarily an importer of western goods for Taiwan’s hotel chains, and though they aren’t actually a direct retailer, I go in there all the time to buy stuff like taco shells and root beer…. 😉

  5. wher in taipei (banciao) can i find horseradish (in a jar or container already processed) and tartar sauce for my deep fried fish??

  6. Have you had a look in citysuper or jason’s?
    The biggest jason’s is located in the basement of the 101 and citysuper is in the basement of the green sogo at the zhonxiao fuxing MRT station.

  7. I would like to know if I can find Balsamic Vinegar there.I know that it’s common rice and wine vinegar, but is it there?? how much does it cost?? thank u!!

  8. I think I read through this whole post and did not see listed the store called “Orange Mart” (gan zai dian). There are two of them in hsinchu, where I work. They have a heavy focus on organic products and also have a number of imported dried goods. On the pricey side, same level as Jason’s.

  9. Only been in Hsinchu a few times on business trips, so don’t really know the city and I have no idea about shops there, but thanks for the heads up.

  10. Try following the link above. The easy one to find is in the basement of the 101 by the food court.

  11. More expensive than what?
    They’re cheaper than CitySuper and Jason’s for sure…

  12. Great list but what is missing is a list of those that take Visa Debit. If you get stuck with a card that is not usable on ATMs then Carrefour and RT Mart are lifesavers. Jasons and Watson also uses Visa Debit. On Tap in the city have Visa Debit facilities.

    back story: I moved here a couple of months ago and the bank I am with, removed ‘PLUS’ from all basic account cards – preventing me from using foreign ATMs… Leaving me stranded. My card could only be used for online purchases or debit purchases in a shop. Not good in a mainly cash only economy…..

    The few stores I mention are nit an extensive list so if anyone can help me to build up that list it would be much appreciated.

    but before you leave your own country.. Make sure your debit card has either ‘PLUS’ or ‘Cirrus’.. Or you could be stranded without any physical cash.

  13. you can find horseradish spread from Jason’s under the taipei 101 building , i got mine there! American brand, not as authentic as the German onces im used to having, expensive, but does the job 🙂

  14. Looking for Ginger Ale…Spray Starch for ironing…and deli meats like sliced turkey or chicken.

  15. Ginger Ale – Most supermarkets like Carrefour
    Spray Starch – Only ever seen that in Costco, but not something I normally buy
    Deli meats, try C!ty’Super or mangiamo good meats

  16. At the moment l am considering moving to Taiwan (work related)… but l am a bit (food) apprehensive. I love Chinese food, but sometimes well you want to eat something from home. My question is can you find good quality milk? I mean creamy fat milk as you can make cottage cheese at home, and through a kit purchased on Amazon you can also make Greek yogurt like FAGE at home or you can make Lebnee which is a Lebanese creamy yogurt cheese. I have been told about Taipei, and the expensive though available deli’s there, what about the rest of the country? I can’t survive without milk…

  17. Don’t expect the “Chinese” food in Taiwan to be anything like what you’re used to where you come from. A lot of the local food is quite greasy for one. It doesn’t mean that you can’t get a good meal here, but it’s a lot of trial an error in beginin.
    You can get good milk here, but it costs a bit more. I’ve made cottage cheese a couple of times, but you’ll have to bring your own rennet. There are at least 10 different milk brands here, some are really really bad, others are at least to me just like any other milk. Make sure you buy “fresh milk” and not “cow milk” and the latter is often made from milk powder.
    I’m honestly not sure about things outside of Taipei, but any bigger city tend to have some kind of fancy super market that will offer deli products, but expect a limited selection. The other option is Costco, anyone can get a membership here, the prices are good for Taiwan, but you end up with large quantities of anything you buy and again, the selection is limited.

  18. Pita bread would be something like Florida bakery or Sababa.
    Tacos, one of the import supermarkets like CitySuper or Jason’s.

  19. @thelostswede thank you for sharing your knowledge. Very usefull. I need to find a german grocery store for a cultural show. And I wanna represent my country as good as possible.

    Thank you very much in advance!

  20. There are no real German shops in Taipei that I know of, but there are a few places worth looking up.
    First up Oma Ursel’s German Bakery, they have a small selection of imported goods and pseudo German bread and cakes – http://www.oma-de.com/
    Then there’s Wendel’s German Bakery and Bistro, that sells pretty decent German style cakes, bread and some imported goods too – http://www.wendels-bakery.com
    CitySuper and Jason’s might also be worth having a look at, although they seem to have less German things than they used to.
    Although not a shop, Der Löwe Bavarian Restaurant might also be of interest, as if nothing else, you can always get some things for take away there – https://www.facebook.com/derloewe.tw/

  21. Thank you very much for your dast reply!
    I will definitely check this places out, especially omas bakery, I heard about that before 🙂

    Cheers

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