Who finds grocery shopping in Spain difficult? The plethora of unknown brands is the hardest part. All of us are brand loyalists and we grew up with certain brands we used as children and that our parents always bought. So grocery shopping is just an automatic exercise of choosing what you have always loved. The notions of grocery shopping when you move abroad are rarely discussed. We tend to come well prepared for finding a doctor, opening a bank account and finding telephone companies. But when moving abroad, you will not be eating out all the time, you will also need to cook at home. Herein lies a new experience I most certainly was least prepared for.
It goes without say that in Spain, most of the brands are totally new and different to many back home. It therefore becomes important to start building up your brand heuristics from scratch. Which ones will you choose: better packaging equals better quality? or the age old one, price equals quality? This new exercise of acquainting yourself with the grocery store could loosely be likened to learning to walk again and it really will be a lot of trial and error. With time you will know the best brands of rice and pasta to buy. You will find that perfect whipping cream with enough fat content to whip without splitting into whey, that hot chocolate drink that reminds you of home and more importantly the brand of bacon that is perfect for your fry up… the list is endless. Carrefour Innovation Awards Product Catalogue
The easiest way to learn the Spanish grocery shopping brands I have seen to date is the Innovation Awards by Carrefour. What you talking about Wesley? Basically, different brands from Spain, big and small, come together to create and compete with an innovative version of an existing product or a completely new product. Brands compete in 12 categories ranging from breakfast, alcoholic drinks, meat, fish, poultry all the way to pharmacy and hygiene products. This is useful to the foreigner because it is an easy way to learn the brands. Generally speaking, the brands who offer quality dare to compete in the Innovation Awards. So as you acquaint yourself with competitors, you get to see what the Spanish grocery market has to offer, who the key contenders are and what brands are worth buying and giving your loyalties to.