Hanamasa — Cheapest Supermarket for Meat, Fish & Vegies

Greg Lane

Hanamasa - the cheapest supermarket in Tokyo for Meat, Fish, Vegies and Frozen goods.

The big format supermarkets like OK are all very well if you’re out in the suburbs, but if you find yourself in central Tokyo, you’ll find your options a lot more limited.  With the smaller format supermarkets like Maruetsu Petit and Precce which proliferate in the central city, you’ll see prices for regular items at more or less convenience store prices while produce prices will get you thinking it might be cheaper to eat out than cook at home.

The exception is Hanamasa – a supermarket that’s not really a supermarket. If you wander in to Hanamasa in the afternoon you could be forgiven for feeling quite out of place as most of the other shoppers will be dressed in chef’s whites. Hanamasa is aimed at the restaurant and hospitality industry so the package sizes are generally enormous. You might feel out of place, but Hanamasa isn’t restricted to the restaurant trade – anyone can shop there.  Despite the jumbo package sizes, the prices are so much cheaper than anywhere else so it’s well worth buying the big sizes and re-bagging them into meal size portions when you get home.

In addition to price – you’ll likely have 4 or 5 times the variety of the smaller supermarket when it comes to cuts as well as types of meat and fish. For example, lamb is always available whereas this can be a rarity at places like Maruetsu.

Smoked Salmon

Here are just a few price comparisons

ItemHanamasaMaruetsu Petit
Mini/Cherry Tomatoes100yen248yen
Brocolli190yen (2 heads)248yen (1 head)
Aubergine/Egg plant150yen198yen
Courgette/Zucchini300yen (for 2)298yen (for 1)
2l Bottled Water78yen99yen

Bulk frozen goods such as chips are also a very good deal.

One thing you won’t find at Hanamasa is a Deli section or any pre-prepared meals.  Hanamasa is in the ingredients business and that’s what they stick to.  However, if you’re visiting Tokyo and you fancy packing a picnic for a small group, you’ll find everything you need including baguettes (not the most authentic but passable), ham, lettuce, cheese and smoked salmon.

They also accept credit cards – which hasn’t always been the case with cheaper places like Hanamasa.



Map:


View Larger Map

Name:Niku no Hanamasa (肉のハナサ)
Locations: (central only)Akasaka, Akihabara, Asakusa, Ikebukuro, Itabashi-Shimura, Ichigaya, Oomori, Kanda(2), Ginza, Kinshicho, Kojimachi, Sangenjaya, Shibaura, Shinokachimachi, Sumiyoshi, Sendagi, Toritsudai, nakano, Nishi-Shinjuku, Nishi-Shimbashi, Nihonbashi-Takaramachi, Nihonbashi-Honmachi, Minami-Azabu, Yuushima
Web:http://www.hanamasa.co.jp/ [Site in Japanese]

 


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12 Responses to “Hanamasa — Cheapest Supermarket for Meat, Fish & Vegies”

  1. I’m in Urayasu, so this doesn’t work for me as the cost of train fair and time spent hauling stuff [that could spoil in this summer heat!] would counter the low prices in most cases..there are a lot of small farmer markets in my area that I find invaluable- though lamb isn’t available, that’s for sure! Small fresh markets are one of my beloved finds here- a head of cabbage costs half as much at the small store by my apartment than it would at Yaoko or Maruetsu. They often have a wide selection of fruits and vegetables as well as fresh fish and cheap meats and prepared deli foods [croquettes, fried fish, tempura, etc]… if I were closer to the locations or if I ever need lamb, I’ll scope this place out!

  2. Jessica Robins-eads

    I’m in Urayasu, so this doesn’t work for me as the cost of train fair and time spent hauling stuff [that could spoil in this summer heat!] would counter the low prices in most cases..there are a lot of small farmer markets in my area that I find invaluable- though lamb isn’t available, that’s for sure! Small fresh markets are one of my beloved finds here- a head of cabbage costs half as much at the small store by my apartment than it would at Yaoko or Maruetsu. They often have a wide selection of fruits and vegetables as well as fresh fish and cheap meats and prepared deli foods [croquettes, fried fish, tempura, etc]… if I were closer to the locations or if I ever need lamb, I’ll scope this place out!

  3. CheapoGreg

    The farmers markets or trucks are great when you can find them – maybe we should put together a map of where and when they happen.  By the way, if you’re in Urayasu, the closest Hanamasa is in Hirai, on the Sobu Line – which isn’t that convenient I guess.  I used to live near there – the public transport from east to west is great but north to south is almost non-existent.

  4. CheapoGreg

    The farmers markets or trucks are great when you can find them – maybe we should put together a map of where and when they happen.  By the way, if you’re in Urayasu, the closest Hanamasa is in Hirai, on the Sobu Line – which isn’t that convenient I guess.  I used to live near there – the public transport from east to west is great but north to south is almost non-existent.

  5. LOVE this market- i live near one and i just got chicken nuggets in a bulk pack with sweet and sour sauce from thailand. everything is so affordable for japanese price! 🙂

    • CheapoGreg

      It’s good value isn’t it? There’s no better place in central Tokyo for produce – frozen stuff too.

  6. stefan grace

    I love Hanamasa and do most shopping there but have found that the veges are usually cheaper at the little ma and pa grocers — and it feels good to be supporting a little granny rather than a huge chain store. Also I find the luxury fish options like smoked salmon and oysters taste a bit like they have done something weird and “preservativy” to them. My fav is the enormous Ozzy steaks in an overly soft bread steak sandwich. If you have a friend with a small oven it’s a really nice taste of home to do a whole roast chicken, which are super cheap. Also love the stewing steak done with a bucket of paprika. The ultra cheap wine is not to be overlooked either.

  7. Oyoivince

    *Gasp* This blog is amaaazing, God bless Tokyocheapo!


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