Especially considering how small the typical Japanese kitchen and refrigerator are, it is still common for many Japanese people to shop at their neighborhood grocer–often daily.
As double-income families continue to increase, an ever-increasing share of the monthly food budget continues shifting to online purchases.
Unsurprisingly, this trend is accelerating, considering online grocers’ ever-increasing available selection, high-quality merchandise, and competitive pricing.
First, please realize that all online grocery services operating around Tokyo still only support the Japanese language. Thus, to begin, it may be necessary to use the Google Translate Extension on Chrome, for example, or some other machine translation service to help you navigate the web-ordering process.
After getting set up and practicing how to order, if you can handle placing items into a web-based shopping cart, then you can become comfortable with any of the following sites:
1. Seikatsu Club (生活クラブ)
With bragging rights to having more than 420,000 members, Seikatsu Club was recently voted the best online grocery delivery service in Tokyo.
As with many of its competitors, Seikatsu Club is a cooperative (often abbreviated as “co-op” pronounced “koh-uup” in Japanese. Japanese people sometimes also refer to such organizations by the traditional Japanese word for cooperative or seikyo.
Seikatsu Club emphasizes the high quality of its product portfolio, which is focused on fresh, natural items.
Processed foods with lots of artificial additives that would be standard fare at a regular “bricks and mortar” supermarket are generally unavailable.
2. Pal・System (パルシステム)
Another cooperative, Pal・System, was also highly rated in the above survey.
Like its competitors, this firm is focused on delivering directly from the “farm to table.”
3. Co-op Deli (コープデリ)
Co-op Deli is a grocery delivery service offered by the Japan Consumers’ Co-operative Union, also known as JCCU. They offer a variety of groceries, including fresh produce, meat, dairy, and pantry staples.
Customers appreciate their high-quality products and commitment to sustainability and social responsibility.
4. Rakuten Seiyu Netsuper (楽天と西友のネットスーパー)
Rakuten Seiyu Netsuper is operated by the eCommerce giant Rakuten and the supermarket chain operator Seiyu.
They offer a wide range of groceries and household items, focusing on fresh produce and high-quality products. Customers have praised their user-friendly website and reliable delivery service. Rakuten users often choose this service to accrue and use Rakuten points.
While users can access a variety of coupons to reduce the overall cost of their purchases.
5. Oisix (オイシックス)
With more than 470,000 users, Oisix is a popular organic grocery delivery service in Tokyo, offering a range of fresh, seasonal produce and other food items.
They work directly with farmers and producers to ensure the highest quality products, and customers appreciate their focus on sustainability and eco-friendliness.
6. Amazon Fresh (アマゾンフレッシュ)
Amazon Fresh is the grocery delivery service offered by the Japan country-specific website of Amazon in Japan. In the search box at the top of the main Amazon page enter 「アマゾンフレッシュ」 to jump to the supermarket section.
They offer many groceries, including fresh produce, meat, dairy, and pantry staples. Customers appreciate their fast and reliable delivery service and their competitive prices.
7. Seijo Ishii (成城石井)
Seijo Ishii is a high-end grocery store chain in Tokyo that offers online grocery delivery. They sell a range of high-quality products, including fresh produce, meat, seafood, and gourmet items.
Customers appreciate their focus on quality and the ability to order specialty items online. While the landing page of their corporate site can toggle back and forth between Japanese and English, the eCommerce platform for food items only supports the Japanese language.
8. Daichi wo Mamorukai (大地を守る会)
Daichi wo Mamorukai, which translates as “protect the soil group,” is another popular cooperative in business for over 40 years.
Their primary focus is on organic products. Its roots date back to a farmer’s market called Aozora Ichiba in Koto-ku, Tokyo.
Daichi wo Mamorukai’s goal is “to expand the richness of nature by connecting people who grow vegetables that do not rely on pesticides and people who eat those vegetables.”
9. Radish Bo-ya (らでぃっしゅぼーや)
This cooperative offers variety of packs that customers can choose to have delivered once per month.
These special deliveries come with whichever fruits and vegetables its network of farmers happens to harvest.
The layout of this firm’s website is relatively simple, which makes it easy to select specific items.
10. Tohto Coop (東都生協)
This popular cooperative has over 50 years of experience delivering fruits and vegetables directly from farms across Japan to Central Tokyo.
While their website features profiles of many farmer suppliers—complete with maps showing their farms’ locations.
11. Ouchi Coop (おうちCO-OP)
This agricultural cooperative sources fruit, produce, etc., from Kanagawa, Shizuoka, and Yamanashi Prefectures to the southwest of Central Tokyo.
Deliveries are made once per week.
Even with limited Japanese language skills, thanks to lots of attractive photography, it is possible to learn how to navigate the web catalogs of each of these websites—particularly if you get a little help at first from someone fluent in Japanese.
It is, however, essential to do your research and compare prices and services offered by different grocery delivery companies in Tokyo to find the one that best meets your needs and budget.