30 years since opening of first Czech supermarket
Although Czechs had to wait for the introduction of the supermarket until the end of communism, today the country has one of the densest networks of these shops.
The first ever Czech supermarket was called “Mana” and opened to visitors on June 6, 1991. For that time, the shop offered an unprecedented amount of fruits. The meat stands were also different, offering customers the option to pick up a ticket and then grab a coffee while the butcher sorted out their order. This was something new to customers who had previously had to wait in long queues at meat stands.
Mana still exists as a supermarket today, but carries a different name. The building has barely changed since it opened three decades ago. However, the shopping habits of Czechs have. The local population has started buying far more pasta and rice than it previously did. Furthermore, the consumption of mineral water has risen significantly. Czech customers have also changed in their meat preference, with chicken being currently the most popular.
The Czech Republic today could be considered one of the major supermarket hubs, but competition from these large vendors is also liquidating smaller shops in the country.
There are currently more than 1,500 supermarkets in Czechia, but their number continues to rise as new competition enters the market and established companies plan further expansion in the coming years. However, large cities are starting to run out of space in which to place supermarkets. This is leading to large shopping centres increasingly appearing in smaller settlements, where they compete with local vendors.