Did you know there are over 2.7 million grocery workers in the United States?

As the COVID-19 pandemic made abundantly clear, we rely on these essential workers to provide us with the food and supplies we need on a day-to-day basis.

Because they’re essential, many grocery stores are looking for workers of all ages to help out. But exactly how old do you need to be to get a grocery store job? And what does the job entail?

If you want to learn the answer to these questions and more, then you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about grocery store jobs. Let’s get started.

How Old Do You Usually Need to Be for a Grocery Store Job?

Like most areas of the country, you will likely need to be 16 to get a grocery store job. This is thanks to the fact that there is a federal law in place that takes off any work limits on minors.

If you’re under the age of sixteen, then there are stipulations and conditions surrounding your working hours. For example, you can’t work more than eight hours a day.

On school days you can’t work for more than three hours, with 18 hours per week being the maximum. On non-school weeks you can only work up to 40 hours.

Finally, you can’t work before 7 am or after 7 pm. These strict working laws surrounding minors often dissuade many employers from hiring people below the age of 16.

The good news is that this isn’t always the case. There are certain types of stores that will still hire a 15, or even a 14-year-old. And, grocery stores fall among them.

However, you will need to fulfill certain obligations which we’ll cover in the next section.

Can You Work These Jobs If You Are 15 or 14 Years Old?

Depending on where you live in the United States you might be able to be hired for a grocery store job. The first thing is to check the state law where you live.

You can find them all at this resource here. Most states require you to get a work permit if you’re under the age of sixteen and want a job. However, this isn’t always the case.

For example, you can start working at places like Starbucks when you turn 14 in Montana. The good news is that many grocery stores also fall in this category.

Since there are a variety of positions in a grocery store many can afford to give some of the simpler ones to younger candidates. So, if you’re under the age of 16, then research local grocery stores in your area.

You should start with stores that specifically hire younger candidates, like Kroger or Safeway. Then, call them up and ask if they accept employees under the age of 16 if they have a work permit.

It’s important to prepare for a “no” answer. However, try your best not to be discouraged. This is part of the job process. So, keep trying until you find a location that needs your help.

What Are the Different Positions for a Grocery Store Job?

As we mentioned before, there are a variety of different positions in each grocery store. Here are just some of the options available:

  • Grocery store managers
  • Cashiers
  • Baggers
  • Shelf stocker
  • Order pullers for online orders
  • Bakery assistants
  • Floral assistant

If you’re below the age of 16 and you’ve been hired, then you can likely expect to start at the bagger position.

This is the standard entry-level position and it’s a good place to get a feel for the ins and outs of the grocery store. However, once you turn 16, you will probably be transferred to cashier, stocker, or whatever position the store needs you at.

It helps to not be picky in these circumstances. Take whatever position is offered, do a good job, and you can expect to be promoted in the future.

How Do You Get Hired at a Grocery Store Job?

These days, most grocery stores require you to apply online. However, many still do accept in-person applications. If this is the case, then we always recommend applying in person.

Why? Because grocery stores receive a lot of applications for a lot of qualified candidates. As such, applying in person is a great way to stand out from your potential competition.

Make sure that you dress up in some nice clothes. Then, print out the application, fill it out, and take it to the store.

Once at the grocery store, go to the customer service desk and ask to speak to the manager. When the manager comes up, introduce yourself and hand off your application.

If they aren’t there, then drop off your application and ask when the best time to contact them for a follow-up is.

If your application is accepted, then you will go through the store’s interview process. Assuming you can jump through all these hoops, then you’ll eventually be hired.

Want to Learn More About Certain Types of Age Restrictions? Keep Exploring

We hope this article helped you learn what age you need to be before you can begin working at a grocery store. As you can see, it’s possible to start working at these stores before you turn sixteen.

It all depends on the individual store and the specific grocery store job you’re applying for.

While it’s never easy to get hired when you’re young, if you get the proper documentation and stick with it, then you’re sure to find a job you’ll enjoy. Looking for more information about age restrictions when it comes to jobs, activities, and life?

If your answer is yes, then you’re in the right place. Keep exploring our site to find out how old you need to be for certain life events.