Definition of grocer in US English:



  • A person who sells food and small household goods.

    • ‘Moreover, another problem is that some grocers sell the subsidised food products which are allocated for the ration cards at higher prices.’
    • ‘By that stage everyone was trying to sell them, even grocers.’
    • ‘The food shopping round here relies more on local grocers and butchers and farm shops such as the vast one at Friday Street than any supermarket.’
    • ‘Gardeners tended her yard and flowers, and the grocer brought her groceries to her on his way home.’
    • ‘He came from a family of grocers in Abel Street but was determined to become a mining engineer, starting with dawn bike rides to Habergham Pit to his junior post.’
    • ‘It had its own butchers, bakers and grocers, not to mention three farms, a carpenters, a wheelwrights, several pubs and a brewery.’
    • ‘Awards will be made for first, second and third in categories for publicans, grocers and general.’
    • ‘It had 10 butchers, 10 grocers, six fish-and-chip shops, haberdashers, ironmongers and fruiterers.’
    • ‘Among the shops nearby were a grocers, a haberdashers, a sweet shop and a tripe shop.’
    • ‘Food was delivered to the house by the grocer, greengrocer, baker and butcher.’
    • ‘Under his direction, a team of volunteers keeps a close watch on any businesses which come up for sale in the area and then helps young grocers or other food sellers to move in.’
    • ‘Vendors and grocers sponsored ingredients for the feast which included a three-course meal.’
    • ‘After all, your neighbourhood grocer would sell much the same stuff at double the price.’
    • ‘In some cases, grocers have refused to sell food and petrol to anti-drug officials and vandals have slashed the tyres of their government vehicles.’
    • ‘This is somewhat ironic since the majority of the wine sold in Britain has been sold by grocers, as opposed to specialists, since at least 1987.’
    • ‘Next we drove to Granville Island and perused its Public Market with grocers, bakers, butchers, and crafts.’
    • ‘She went to the grocers and bought food and supplies with her own money.’
    • ‘Therefore, grocers and other food/beverage vendors must buy commercial refrigeration units.’
    • ‘Many independent shops such as grocers, cafes and butchers now say they will not be able to afford the steep increase in rates on top of rent rises.’
    • ‘Small specialist shops such as bakers, grocers and butchers in villages, and even towns and cities, are vanishing.’


Middle English (originally ‘a person who sold things in the gross’ (i.e. in large quantities)): from Old French grossier, from medieval Latin grossarius, from late Latin grossus ‘gross’.