At least one person has been killed and several others injured after a man started stabbing people at a supermarket in Hamburg, Germany.

Police say one person has been arrested following the incident at the store in the Barmbek region north of the city, but added it is too soon to determine a motive.

Witnesses described seeing the suspect "indiscriminately" attacking customers before feeling the shop.

The suspect was arrested after bystanders followed him and alerted the police.

Streets next to the supermarket have been closed off and residents have been advised to stay away from the area.

German news site Bild obtained a picture of what is believed to be the suspect with a bloodied bag over his head in the back of a police vehicle. One eyewitness also said he heard the attacker shout Allah Akbar - Arabic for God is great - before launching the attack, although this has not been confirmed.

Police also said they cannot confirm earlier reports that the stabbing was the result of a robbery gone wrong.

Hamburg Police confirmed on Twitter: "Barmbek: An assailant has attacked and injured several people in a supermarket. One person has died. Suspect has been arrested.

"We have no clear information as to the motive or the number of wounded.

"It was definitely a sole attacker. The first reports about a possible motive of a robbery have not been confirmed."

hamburg stabbing
A police officer looks on after a knife attack in a supermarket in Hamburg, Germany, Reuters