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Statistics on the baguette consumption in France question

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turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

Statistics on the baguette consumption in France question

Does anyone know how to get recent statistics about the consumption of baguettes in France over the last 10 years


or so. I have tried contacting the The Association of Bakers in France in both English and French as well as other sources and never get an answer. There has been deep reduction in comsumption of the baguette and it has had a very negative effect on the bakers who prepare it from scratch ("a La Masion") a classification defined by the French government. I have been wanting to write an article "Save The Baguetts" but can only find old figures. 


 


Thanks,


Patricia Turo

thomasp's picture
thomasp

Acording to the 2001 version of Francoscopie: Comment vivent les Français by Mermet:


in 1998 : The average person in France consumes 160 g of bread per day.


 


 


While I'm not French and I do not currently live in France,I can tell you , anecdotally, that bread consumption is visable down from the mid-90's to today. I've also seen a decrease in bread quality. For example: last year I had perhaps the worst croissant of my life (pre-made frozen with a hint of plastic) ....and I was in Paris. All this comes from regular travels to France (at least once per year) and lots of bread.

turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

Thanks for you comments.  I do have this figure and found some old figures on the amount it has decreased. The French eat about 5 oz.or a half of a baguette pe day compared to 2 lbs. a centruy ago. But again the figure is a little old 1996, -  I was hoping to find more recent figures. It is considerably down and in fact the boulangerie that can actually call itself "a La Mansion" are almost extinct. Most boulangerie use frozen dough and can't be claissfied as "a La Mansion".  I'm trying to find out how many of these boulangerie still exist in France. Again I have written to all of the organizations that might be able to supply me with these facts but none seems to want to answer.


Thanks for your comment,


Patricia

 

Darth Lefty's picture
Darth Lefty

Two pounds of bread a day!  Did they eat anything else?

rainwater's picture
rainwater

I have travelled a little bit, and have found pastries in other countries disappointing.  Living in Houston, TX, which is more of a culinary mecca than most would think; I have the good fortune of a few bakeries that make excellent pastries.  I'm usually disappointed when looking for a sweet pastry in another country.  I'm especially disappointed in the Airports abroad and the food offered in the Airports.  I just assumed that because they were Europeon airports the food and pastries would be excellent......I have found much better food in my local Houston airport. 


I read recently that surprisingly Greece has the highest consumption of bread per capita......interesting.  I mentioned this to a close friend of my wife who lives in Greece and she confirmed this....but she, a Ukrainian native, commented that the bread was not great quality. 


I'm aware this is a little "off topic", but I'm surprised that Europe is optiing for the quick frozen doughs, and America is slowly moving toward more artisanal methods. 


Personally, the more I bake, the more I move toward higher percentages of whole grains.....I'm also moving away from any "extras" in the dough.  If the bread is good, it needs less and less.....whole grains/unbleached flour, sea salt, good water, yeast/or starter......sustained fermentation.....this is something that will bring back consumption of bread.

turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

The bread in Germany and Switzerland are really fantastic. But I find bread in Italy very dry and almost never eat it. Pastries really differ from country to country and Austria, Switzerland, France and Germany really top my list. I come from Italian heritage and I love Italian desserts, they are less into pastries as other types of desserts.  Biscotti, tarts, pudding type desserts are very good but Italian desserts are not sweet.


The consumption of bread in Europe was a staple of thier diet in the past.  That has changed today and it has become less important. Also in the past many women didn't work, this has also changed dramatically today. People don't seem to have as much time to bake and quality becomes less important. In fact many people I meet in Italy complain that yourg Italians don't know how to cook. With life styles changing and the need for people to move to other countries and working habits impacting life here, so does everything else.  


I've visited Greece and don't recall the bread.  I would have thought that Germany would have topped the list. We had a company there for several years and I thought the bread was fantastic. The variety was also amazing and their pastries, cookies and cakes are really wonderful.


Thanks for your comments it is great to hear about other peoples experiences.


Regards,


Patricia

jaheim's picture
jaheim

Your best bet may be INSEE : http://www.insee.fr/fr/publications-et-services


A keyword search on "pain" at their site produces results like:


#
Insee - Bases de données - Indices et séries statistiques ...
Ensemble; Produits alimentaires . Ensemble; Pain et céréales. Ensemble · Pain · Pâtisserie fraîche et viennoiserie · Gâteaux, pâtisserie de conservation ...
www.indices.insee.fr/bsweb/servlet/bsweb?action=BS...BS_IDARBO...
Labeled Le ...
#
des prix à la consommation - Insee - Bases de données - Indices et ...
Indice des prix à la consommation - IPC - Prix moyens à la consommation en métropole - Pain baguette (Prix au kg). Identifiant : 442423 ...
www.indices.insee.fr/bsweb/servlet/bsweb?action=BS...BS...pains
Labeled Le ...


They seem to be current on many stats to Sept 2009

turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

Thank you so much for the information. I'll take a look.


 


Regards,


Patricia

dghdctr's picture
dghdctr

Steven Kaplan (or Stephen Laurence Kaplan) has authored several books on French history, and he seems to be quite the expert on the history of French baking.


You can check out his list of written works at these links:


http://www.arts.cornell.edu/history/faculty-department-kaplan.php


http://www.amazon.com/Good-Bread-Back-Contemporary-History/dp/0822338335


Anyway, he is on leave from Cornell now, but his e-mail address there is  slk8@cornell.edu.  Maybe he still checks his e-mail there, or maybe a department secretary can tell you how to contact him.


--Dan DiMuzio

turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

Thank you Dan for your information. I'll take a look at it and see if it helps.  


 


Best regards,


Patricia Turo

SallyBR's picture
SallyBR

Not sure about the numbers, but I can tell you that from 2004 until the present it went down somewhat.


 


that's when me and my husband moved back to the US  (sorry, could not resist)...


:-)

thomasp's picture
thomasp

So it isn't about Baguettes but it is about French people eating bread during the last year:


http://www.boulangerie-patisserie.net/actualites.php?id=8124


It looks like the average male consumes 129g/day and the average female, 79g/day.


 


T

turosdolci's picture
turosdolci

Hi,


Everything I've read so far indicates that the changes of lifestyle in France are impacting baguette consumption. The end result is that the "a la masion boulangerie" are indangered.  I've written to the French Boulangerie-patisserie Assocation and a number of other organizations in France to try to disucss this without success.  My husband speakes French and made sure my corrspondance was written in French.  But I hope to do some research on this in May when I hope to go to France. I've read this web site before.  Maybe we can get some local people to give us some thoughts on this. Maybe if there are some French members here they can also interview some boulanger and get some local view on this.


Thanks for the web site.


Patricia

Renaud's picture
Renaud

Hello Patricia


 


I'm the founder of Boulangerie-patisserie.net.


May be I can answer some of your questions about french bread ?