Starting a Bent N Dent Grocery Store

January 1, 2020

We are located in Kingman Arizona and I was thinking about starting a dented can store. Can you please give me an idea of how much it would cost to buy the merchandise for a small store?


What are the legalities if someone gets sick from the canned food?


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January 1, 20200 found this helpful
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This is a very 'involved' business to start but if you're thinking about it you should talk with your state, county and city offices to find out all the regulations regarding this type of store. Be prepared to be shocked (some states are more strict than others).

Also, your local Small Business Administration usually always can provide information and usually will have pamphlets with a lot of information that every new business owner needs.

ThriftyFun also receives questions on this subject so check out their answers.

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January 2, 20200 found this helpful
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First off you need to check with the country health services in your area. This is a complicated business to open up. You will need to get permits for the store to start off with. I am not sure how much these cost in your area.


Second, you need to find your store space and rent the space.

Third, you need to get your shelves for the store so you can display your stock.

Fourth, you need to find a company that sells dented items.

I do believe that you have to watch the expiration date on cans so that you comply with the law for selling safe food.

I would say to start off with you are looking at around $50,000 to $100,000 to open a store like this.

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January 11, 20200 found this helpful
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I just opened my store two weeks ago. It took me about 3 months from the time I decided to open a store until I actually opened. My total cost for everything was $30k. I got lucky with my location as it already had coolers and freezer along with most of the shelving.


The biggest expense is your inventory. My inventory cost for a truckload was $18k delivered. 52 pallets with 48 boxes per pallet. A LOT of food! I could fill a 5,000 sq ft store with that much food.

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September 5, 2012

I am very much considering opening a bent and dent grocery store in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. I am looking for any information about were to get product and regulations please. Thank You

By Sara


March 19, 20130 found this helpful

Did you ever open one in Oshkosh?

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April 10, 2016

I have a discount bent and dent grocery store and am looking for groceries close to me in Missouri.

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November 13, 2013

I want to start a Bent and Dent store in Caledonia, Minnesota and need to find out how to get it started and who to buy my shipments from. Can you help with this information?

By clproudma07

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January 17, 2011

I would like information on how to start a bent and dent grocery store. Where I can get the groceries to stock the store?

By Tammy Upton from Rogersville, AL


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January 17, 20110 found this helpful

I did a search and found a few sites that may help. If you actually get your store open you can list it with some of these sites like this one:


Here are the ones I found that I think you would be interested in right now:

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January 25, 20113 found this helpful

We are out of Alpharetta GA and can supply everything from Banana Boxes to Frozen product. We specialize in frozen entrees and meat product, but we partner with some really good banana box suppliers.


We also have soaps, shampoos, and detergents out of our Greenville SC warehouse. We do not require full truck load purchases and specialize in the small store.

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February 14, 20121 found this helpful

Hi. I am an owner of a salvage store in NY. It is called That Discount Place. You can see it on Facebook. My family also had 3 stores in Indiana.
I am currently also doing operations work helping people run and start businesses. If you would like to talk please email me at jane AT and we will arrange a time. Good luck.

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February 24, 2010

I want to buy wholesale dented can goods. Where can I purchase them?

By waymon from SC


February 26, 20100 found this helpful

Hi there, please take some friendly advice. You really don't want to do that. I was a waitress for 25 years, and I've taken many food handlers courses, and dented cans is an issue that has been addressed in every one of them. This is what they teach. There is a protective coating on the inside of cans, and when they are dented, especially around the seams, it damages that coating. That can allow bacteria to get in and contaminate the food.


Even if it seems to look and smell fine, there is the potential to make someone very sick. I never, ever buy dented cans, and if it gets dented between the store and my pantry, I toss it. Please don't just take my word for it, check with your county health department, or a few head chefs. Please, reconsider your kind gesture. Food poisoning is not just miserable, it can kill. It has killed. mellie

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February 27, 20101 found this helpful

There are a variety of bent and dent stores that sell items 10%-50% of actual cost. Grocery stores end up with boxes of freight each week that get damaged somehow in transit. Sometimes a label, slight ding, and they can't put them on the shelves. Same way with squishables.

My son is a grocery store manager and they get credit back for the products. Frozen foods they don't send back, just get credit, so my son knows many families who 'would benefit' and bags them up and drops them off. One time it was the handles on the 5 qt ice cream that came broke. He called me from the store and I found enough freezer space with friends to help get the stock out of the store and then off to people who appreciated it. The owner of the store o.k.s all disposed of. Even outdated or soon to out date.

This week, the half gal milk I usually buy gallon size of had 1 week left before expiration date. So they reduced the price by $.50 a half gal to move it faster. I can keep it in my fridge at a lower rate too. The exp date is suggested; fresh food varies beyond that date.

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September 1, 2017

How do I start a bent and dent grocery store?

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December 29, 2011

I am interested in opening a bent and dent store in Greenville, Alabama. I have a prime location on main state highway with building and parking. I need some help with suppliers and regulations please.

By L. P.


January 10, 20120 found this helpful

Silly question from across the pond but what is a bent and dent store? Regards, Pam

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February 13, 20120 found this helpful

We are located in Suwanee GA and could supply just above everything you need product wise. Email me at phardy AT and we can discuss what you need. We supply products to many salvaged stores in the Southeast.

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March 5, 2009

I am opening a salvage grocery in Dubuque, IA and am looking for salvage grocery wholesalers. Are there any recommended ones in my area or that will ship to Iowa?

Jill from Dubuque, IA


Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 147 Feedbacks
March 5, 20090 found this helpful

Search for the above, lot of information there, good luck.

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January 25, 20110 found this helpful

We are out of Indiana and can provide frozen and cooler product. We also do banana boxes.

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October 26, 20110 found this helpful

I can provide you with dry, refrigerated, and frozen product; in code, short code and out of code.

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January 18, 2012

I am looking to start a bargain bent and dent type small grocery store in Greenville, South Carolina. Anybody have any ideas where I can get the merchandise for the store nearby?

By corey9602 from Greenville, SC


February 13, 20120 found this helpful

We supply many of the salvage stores in the southeast. Please email me at phardy AT and we can help you. We carry small quantity mixed lots that are perfect for opening up a small store.

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July 14, 2019

I would like to open a salvage food store in Kentucky. Where do I find a supplier?

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April 21, 2015

I would like to start a scratch and dent business. I live in an area where wages and jobs are low paying. There are no places near here to buy low cost groceries and or appliances. I would like info on starting this type of business.

By Barron

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October 27, 2014

I am starting a Bent and Dent food store. Where can I get the food?

By Tom from Waterford, OH

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October 23, 2014

I live in Missouri and need info on starting a store, suppliers, etc. Any help would be appreciated.

By Cathy S.

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