For about the last 3 years I have made a point of developing a good relationship with each of these in the four different stores I shop at. Generally we stop to talk about this and that, exchange thoughts on preparation etc. I find that not only is this pretty nice but also it is beneficial. Most of the time when say I buy fish they won't sell me what is in the case but will go back in the back and bring out some fresh fish. Today I bought 2 soft shell crabs that were on their way out and the guy gave them to me for 4 bucks. They were still kicking when I prepped them later and they were wonderful. I did make a point of buying some catfish at the same time though for tomorrow. The large chain stores tend to have higher turnover but I just start a relationship with the next person.
Do you find that this is worth the effort.