Latino Supermarkets Are a Hit in California


Hispanic grocery stores are known for their unique selections of meats and spices, along with and array of international products that have been attracting customers for generations.

“We go in for the meats, but we usually buy other stuff too. We walk through there, ‘oh I got to buy that! Eye shopping!” exclaimed Fidel Mazon.

According to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau there are over 50 million Hispanics living in the U.S., Hispanic grocery stores realize a lot of money can be made if they market to the booming Latino population.

“It’s well-known that for many factors that the Hispanic community spends a larger share of their income [on food] than other ethnicities,” said Antonio Avalos, an Economics Professor at California State University of Fresno.

The buying power of Hispanics is expected to grow by 50% to $1.5 trillion by 2015, according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia.  This rate is larger than all racial and ethnic groups overall spending growth.

“This is significant because as we know the Hispanic population is growing very rapidly and this of course is translating into a growing buying power of the Hispanic population,” said Avalos.

By 2042, Hispanics are expected to be the majority in California and Latino supermarkets will mean big business. It’s not just small carnecerias or shops—chain stores like Vallarta Supermarkets are moving in. They have over forty stores around California.

“This one has a lot of other products that other grocery stores don’t have, they carry a big line of products that you can’t get anywhere else,” said shopper Mazon.

Latino supermarkets are careful not just to cater to the Hispanic community; they want to get customers from all backgrounds to shop in their stores.

“We have the signs and everything we got it in Spanish and in English so they can read it and the pricing and the description of the items,” said Samuel Montano, manager of Garcia’s Market in Kerman.

If Latino supermarkets keep appealing to people of all backgrounds that could be good news for the economy.

“If they keep consuming more and more, at least food items, hopefully we’ll get out of the recession faster,” said Avalos.

Michelle Macaluso is a Fox News Junior Reporter based in Fresno, CA.

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