Required Report - public distribution
GAIN Report Number: FR9013
HRI FOOD SERVICE SECTOR
Enter a Descriptive Report Name
M. Melinda Meador
Overall sales in the French hotel, restaurant and institution (HRI) food service sector have shown steady growth over
the past five years, rising from $85.8 billion in 2004 to $119.2 billion in 2008. During calendar year 2008, the French
HRI sector served approximately 10.2 billion meals valued at 81.1 billion Euros ($119.2 billion), an increase of eight
percent over the period 2006-2008. The gain in HRI sales was supported by strong demand in the institutional catering
and fast food section of the commercial catering sector. Lower sales by restaurants and hotel/resorts last year are not
forecast to recover in 2009.
Best prospects for U.S. suppliers targeting the HRI sector are fish and seafood, hormone-free high quality beef, frozen
foods including desserts, fruit juices and sodas, quality wines, salad dressings, sauces, spices, brown rice and dried peas,
beans and lentils.
Note: Exchange rates used in this report are as follows:
Calendar Year 2005: USD1 = 0.8038 Euros
Calendar Year 2006: USD1 = 0.796 Euros
Calendar Year 2007: USD1 = 0.7312 Euros
Calendar Year 2008: USD1 = 0.6803 Euros
(Source: Central Intelligence Agency Fact Book)
SECTION I. MARKET SUMMARY
1. France in Profile
With a total area of 551,000 square kilometers, excluding overseas departments and
territories, France is the largest country in western European. In 2008, 64.3 million
Frenchmen (French National Institute for Statistics (INSEE) had a per capita gross domestic
product (GDP) of $44,544. While the number of households (25.7 million) has exhibited an
overall growth trend since 1975, the size of the household population continues to decrease.
French households spent 10.4% of their budget on food and non-alcoholic beverages in 2008
versus 10.3% in 2007 and 2.2% in 2008 on alcoholic beverages and tobacco versus 0.1% in
2007 (INSEE). France ranks first in Europe, and third worldwide, in overall expenditures on
food and related items behind the United States and Japan.
Recently, the demand for meals prepared outside the home had been on the rise, attributable
to changing lifestyles, including the higher number of women working outside the home. In
2008, however, consumers spent less time at restaurant meals, spent less per meal and ate
out less often, especially during the week, due to the economic downturn. This behavior
benefited fast food demand, especially in sandwich and snack distribution outlets, which saw
an 11 percent rise in sales compared to 2007. The institutional catering sector in 2008, in
response to demands for more company-provided meals and contract catering for an aging
population, continued its growth trend.
2. France's Food Service Sector
Overall sales in the French hotel, restaurant and institution (HRI) sector have shown steady
growth over the past five years, rising from $85.8 billion in 2004 to $119.2 billion in 2008
(Trade source estimates). During calendar year 2008, the French HRI sector served
approximately 10.2 billion meals valued at 81.1 billion Euros ($119.2 billion), an increase of
eight percent over the period 2006-2008. 2008 gains in HRI sales were supported by strong
sales in the institutional catering and fast food section of the commercial catering sector. Sales
lost by restaurants and hotel /resorts last year are not forecast to recover in 2009 (Neo-
Restauration Magazine, and trade estimates).
Best prospects for U.S. suppliers targeting the HRI sector are fish and seafood, hormone-free
high quality beef, frozen foods including desserts, fruit juices and sodas, quality wines, salad
dressings, sauces, spices, rice and dried vegetables.
The HRI sector consists of two sub-sectors:
Commercial catering ? 78% of the HRI sector, by sales - includes traditional
restaurants, hotels and resorts, leisure parks, cafeterias, cafes, brasseries, and fast
food outlets, including street vendors. In 2008, sales totaled 63.2 billion Euros ($92.9
billion) with 5.7 billion meals served. Sales by traditional restaurants represented 57%
of the sector; sales by fast food, cafeteria, cafe and brasserie outlets represented 22%
Institutional catering ? 22% of the HRI sector, by sales - includes education, healthcare,
business catering, schools, hospitals, factory restaurants, and air and sea catering. In
2008, sales totaled 17.9 billion Euros ($26.3 billion) with 4.5 billion meals served.
Traditional and theme restaurants lost six percent of sales during the last six months of 2008,
compared to 2007, attributable to consumer?s reaction to the economic crisis. Experts warn
that this shift may be temporary as consumers are expected to return to traditional/theme
restaurants when economic factors improve. In addition, a recent law reducing the value
added tax rate for restaurant food sales from 19.6 percent to 5.5 percent could
impact consumer demand for restaurant meals.
In 2008, the average expense per visit in commercial catering can be broken as follows:
Type of Restaurants Average Expense per % change
Theme restaurants 22.78 -3.6
Traditional restaurants 14.02 -7.0
Fast food local specialties or ethnics 9.61 -1.5
Fast food, pizzas, take away or 9.01 -3.6
Alternative distribution 5.23 +10.2
Sandwich, bakery 5.19 +6.6
Source: NPD Group for Neo-Restauration Magazine
In 2008, sales increased by 7.5 percent compared to 2007. Economic woes encouraged
worker?s to frequent company-provided cafeterias for low-cost meals. The requirements of
feeding an aging population, either in institutions or through home-delivered meals, kept
demand strong for institutional catering. This sector is expected to continue its growth trend.
For 2009, operators remain confident despite a fiercely competitive environment with vigorous
price negotiation. Education (schools, universities) and business catering sectors are growing
more slowly than the healthcare and hospital sectors.
Advantages, Opportunities and Challenges Facing U.S. Products in France
The French HRI sector growth trend Domestic and intra-EU products supply a
high proportion of French food and
beverages needs. Therefore, U.S.
suppliers face stiff challenges
Growing demand for fast food mainly at lunch Rate of growth in fast food sector may be
time; U.S. suppliers may find a niche (soups, fruit short-lived
juices, sodas, etc.)
High proportion of French household budget spent Reduced consumer budget due to
on food purchases economic downturn
Weakness of the U.S. dollar vis-a-vis the Euro Price competition is fierce
benefits U.S. products
Decreasing European and French fish/seafood Fierce competition places enormous
catch pressure on suppliers
France is Europe's leading meat consumer, U.S. suppliers must comply with European
primarily for natural and lean meat. Increased and French regulations such as food
quota for non-hormone beef imports enlarges safety, logistical constraints, labeling
market opportunities regulations and ban on beef produced with
growth promoting hormones
French consumers demand quality, innovative, U.S. suppliers must adapt products to
healthy products reasonably priced French consumers' tastes and expectations
at moderate prices
U.S. fast food chains, theme restaurants, and the Certain food ingredients are banned or
food processing industry are raising demand for restricted from the French market
American food ingredients
SECTION II. ROAD MAP FOR MARKET ENTRY
1. Commercial Catering
With 78 percent of the HRI market, commercial catering dominates this sector in France.
Trade sources value the commercial catering sector at 63.2 billion Euros ($92.9 billion) in
2008, with about 5.7 billion meals served annually. This sector consists of:
Traditional restaurants, including chains - This includes individual proprietor restaurants,
multi-restaurant companies and large corporations, which represent about 57 percent
of the commercial catering sector. A large number of restaurants in and around Paris,
and in other major French cities, are medium/high end restaurants serving a wide
range of traditional food, although an increasing number specialize in cuisine from Asia,
Africa, India and America. Restaurant chains are growing at a faster rate than
independent restaurants with sales increasing by over 5 percent in 2008, compared to
the previous year, and approximately 105 new outlets opened in 2008.
Hotels and resorts with restaurants ? These establishments are operated by individual
proprietors, companies or large corporations and account for 6 percent of the
commercial catering market with over 17,500 restaurants. In general, the French do
not frequent hotels for their restaurants, except for dinner when traveling, with the
exception of a small number of luxury hotels with well-known restaurants, classified by
famous guides such as "Michelin" or "Gault & Millau." These restaurants serve a wide
range of traditional or ethnic foods.
Leisure parks - France has about 50 leisure parks, three world-class (Disneyland Resorts
Paris, Parc Asterix and Futuroscope). Disneyland Resorts Paris has about 15 million
visitors annually with food sales estimated at $300 million. It is the leading leisure park
in France serving approximately 35 million meals and snacks yearly. Disneyland
Resorts Paris has its own central buying office, "Convergence Achats."
Asterix, a French history themed park, is the second largest leisure park in France and serves
about two million meals yearly. Asterix serves only traditional and neo-traditional French
food. The third largest is Futuroscope serving approximately one million meals per year.
Cafeterias, Cafes and Brasseries - Operated by individual proprietors, companies or
large corporations, they represent around 19 percent of the commercial catering
sector. These outlets serve sandwiches or quick lunches at reasonable prices.
Fast food outlets, including street vendors - Operated by companies and large
corporations, these outlets represent 18 percent of the commercial catering. Food sales
in U.S.-style fast food restaurants, led by McDonald's and followed by Quick, a distant
second, continue to rise in France. Most U.S.-style fast food restaurants procure food
inputs in France and Europe. For example, 95 percent of McDonald's food purchases for
its French restaurants are made in Europe.
The number of French fast food outlets offering typically French food, such as baguette
sandwiches, quiches and salads, has risen steadily since 2001. In 2008, this market segment
increased an average of eleven percent, compared to 2007, and sold approximately 1.8 billion
sandwiches in 10,000 outlets including bakery, gas-station and transportation locations,
automatic distributors, cafes, bars, brasseries, retail food sector and exposition/leisure parks.
Delivered catering, including ethnic (e.g. sushi) - A competitive sector operated by
companies and large corporations, this growing segment of commercial catering is
comprised generally of the meal delivery (mainly to companies) and pizza delivery
(mainly to households).
1.1 Company Profiles
The table below provides information on leaders in the French commercial catering sector:
Leaders in the Commercial Catering Sector in France in Calendar Year 2008
Rank Groups 2008 Sales Sales % Change N umber of
(In Million 2008/2007 Outlets
1 McDonald's France 4,851 +10.74 1134
2 Financiere Quick 1,077 +2.66 354
3 Agapes Restauration 977 +2.91 353
4 Elior 813 +1.65 722
5 Servair (Air 769 +12.55 N/A
7 Groupe Flo 753 +18.25 267
8 Buffalo Grill 707 +4.86 301
9 Groupe Le Duff 486 +2.67 438
10 Groupe Holder 461 +2.61 364
11 Yum Brands 441 +15.38 163
12 Casino Cafeteria 407 -8.64 203
13 EuroDisney SCA 386 +9.38_ 68
14 Auto Grill 352 +3.50 524
15 Sesare SAS 408 +7.47 212
16 SSP Compass 284 +1.84 200
17 Sodexo Group 260 +5.48 N/A
18 Accor 228 +3.33 N/A
19 Bertrand OB Holding 216 +3.52 N/A
20 Bars & Co. 198 -8.78 150
21 La Mie Caline 181 +14.95 174
21 PJB Holding 181 - 1.37 32
22 Cora 169 +0.88 57
N/A: Not Available
Source: Neo-Restauration Magazine
Commercial Catering in France: Leading Groups and Brands in Calendar Year 2008
McDonald's France McDonald's
France Quick SA Quick
Agapes Restauration Flunch, Pizza Pai, Amarine, Les 3 Brasseurs, Sogood cafe, Pizza
Pai Express, Il Ristorante
Servair (air catering) Servair
Elior Arche, Boeuf Jardinier, Jules Verne, Drouant, Phileas, Pomme
Buffalo Grill SA Buffalo Grill
Groupe Flo Hippopotamus, Bistrot Romain, brasseries, concessions Flo,
Casino Cafeterias Cafeterias Casino, C?urs de ble, Bars, Saveurs d?Evenements
Groupe Le Duff Brioche Doree, Pizza Del Arte, Fournil de Pierre
Accor Lenotre, Wagons Lits
Groupe Holder Paul, St Preux, Laduree
Autogrill Autogrill Relais, Cote France, Spizzico, le Petit Cafe
Eurodisney SCA Disneyland Resort Paris
Yum Brands Pizza Hut, KFC
SSP Compass Bonne Journee, Cafe Select, Scapucci, Upper Crust, Tarte Julie,
Ritazza Cafe, Le Train Bleu
Group Bertrand OB Holding Restaurants a themes, sandwicheries Bert?s, cafeterias Eris,
Bars & Co. Au Bureau, Irish Coffee, Cafe Leffe
Serrare SAS Courtepaille
Cora Cafeterias Cora
PJB Holding Brasseries and restaurants, Chez Clement, Casa del Campo
Source: Neo-Restauration Magazine
Major Fast Food Segment in France, including pizzas, in Calendar Year 2008
Groups Number of Sales in % Sales
Restaurants 2008 Increase
McDonald's France 1134 4.851 +10.74
France Quick 354 1,077 + 2.66
KFC France 163 441 +15.38
Major French Fast Food including pizzas
Flunch, Pizza Paii,, 3 Brasseurs, Amarine, 353 977 + 2.91
Sogood Cafe, Il Ristorante
Hippopotamus, Bistro Romain, brasseries 267 753 +18.25
concessions Flo, Tablapizza (Groupe Flo)
Pizza Hut, KFC (Yum Brands) 163 441 +15.38
Paul, St Preux (Groupe Holder) 364 461 + 2.61
La Station Sandwich, Pomme de Pain, 722 813 + 1.65
Aubepain, Cafe Route, Phileas, Paul (Groupe
Brioche Doree, Le Fournil de Pierre Caffe Del 438 486 + 2.67
Arte, Pizza Del Arte (Groupe Le Duff)
Bonne Journee, Cafe Ritazza, Upper Crust, Café 200 284 + 1.84
Sodexo Prestige, l?Affiche, les Bateaux Parisiens N/A 260 + 5.48
La Mie Caline (La Mie Caline) 174 181 +14.95
Domino?z Pizza 146 129 +28.65
Speed Rabbit Pizza, Pizza Mania (Speed Rabbit 170 74 +12.33
La Boite a Pizza (Socorest) 118 61 +23.51
Pizza Pino 7 51 + 1.13
Ciao, Spizzico, Burger King, La Galleria, Cote 524 352 + 3.50
France, Relais, Pain a la ligne ?(Autogrill)
Relais H Café (Relais H SNC) 192 143 + 8.94
La Croissanterie (La Croissanterie SA) 148 105 + 6.27
1.2 Entry Strategy
Most large restaurant businesses, including chains, offer local cuisine and use imported
products only if local alternatives cannot be found. However, niche opportunities for U.S.
suppliers exist for a range of diverse products such as fish/seafood, exotic meats, sauces
(prepared sauces or dehydrated sauce bases) and salad dressings, a variety of food
ingredients, wine, and frozen ethnic/regional food service meals in any outlet where the
clientele is looking for "ethnic and/or regional" cuisine or non-traditional options.
U.S. exporters should consider the financial strength, number and location of outlets, menu
diversification, and purchasing policy of the business when targeting major restaurants or
chains. In addition, U.S. exporters should also consider the following in formulating their entry
Check EU and French regulations, e.g., hormone-free meat, biotech regulations,
and carefully verify the acceptability of each product's ingredients and additives.
For information on EU regulations, visit the following website:
Note that French consumers are not very receptive to GMOs. In addition, the
allowable adventitious presence level for EU-approved varieties of GMO?s is set
at 0.9 percent. Above this level, all products must be labeled as containing
biotech. Such products are generally not marketed at the retail level in France.
The Fraud Control Office (DGCCRF) of the French Ministry of Economy, Finance
and Industry is the French enforcing authority. For more details on EU
regulations, see GAIN Reports E48078 and E48137, and on France?s
implementation, see Paris Annual Biotechnology report FR9003.
Check EU and French food safety requirements.
Verify the price competitiveness of the product compared to local and other
imported products; check customs clearance requirements and any additional
import charges based on sugar, milk, fat and starch content.
Identify local agents/distributors that can promote and distribute U.S. products
to restaurants that order small volumes on a regular basis.
1.3 Distribution Channels
Some restaurant chains have their own central buying offices, but most, including traditional
restaurants, as well as hotels and resorts, buy through cash & carry channels or specialized
Cash & Carry wholesalers display a wide selection of food and non- food products in large
stores. They sell to food retailers, food-service sector restaurants and restaurant chains. Cash
& carry offers competitive prices, a variety of products, extended operating hours and
immediate product availability. Major cash & carry groups are Metro (French subsidiary of
Metro/Germany) and Promocash (a subsidiary of Carrefour) together representing 75 percent
of total sales in the wholesale sector.
Specialized Distributors/Wholesalers have, as their main activity, distribution of food products.
They have dry and cold storage facilities with refrigerated/freezer trucks for deliveries. They
buy from processing companies, foreign exporters or importers. Their largest clients are in the
Major Specialized Distributors/Wholesalers for the Food Service Sector
Name of Wholesaler/Distributor Specialization
Pomona (Privately Owned) Fresh fruits and vegetables
Aldis (Group Metro) All fresh and frozen foods, including seafood and
Prodirest (Group Carrefour) Frozen food
Davigel (Subsidiary of Nestle) Frozen food and seafood
Brake France (Subsidiary of Brake Frozen food and seafood
Demarne Freres (Privately Owned) Fresh/chilled and frozen fish and seafood
PRF (Privately Owned) Fresh/chilled and frozen fish and seafood
Francap Buying office and wholesaler for small supermarkets
Source: Neo-Restauration Magazine
Top Four Hotel & Resort Chains in France & Europe with
Restaurant and Catering Services
Group Name Nationality Hotel resort name Purchasing Sources
Accor French (Etap Hotel, Formule 1, Importers/wholesalers/direct or
Ibis, Mercure, Novotel, cash & carry
Sofitel, All Seasonsl)
Envergure French (Campanile, Kyriad Importers/wholesalers/direct or
(Louvre Hotels) Prestige, Kyriad, Premiere cash & carry
The U.K. (Holiday Inn, Express Importers/wholesalers/direct or
Intercontinental Holiday Inn, IHG cash & carry
Hotels Group InterContinental)
Choice Hotels U.S. (Clarion, Comfort, Quality) Importers/wholesalers/direct or
cash & carry
Source : La Revue HRC (hotel, restaurant, cafe)
2. Institutional Catering (including schools, universities, health & elderly care,
company catering, air and sea catering, and others, including army and prison
The institutional catering sector represents 22 percent of the HRI market. Trade sources value
the institutional catering sector at 17.9 billion Euros ($26.3 billion) with approximately 4.5
billion meals served in 2008. Since 2000, this sector has grown at an annual rate of 5 percent,
and increased 7.5 percent in 2008 compared to 2007. This sector includes:
Contract Catering Businesses
This includes company restaurants, schools and universities, hospitals, nursing and retirement
homes and is dominated by specialized companies such as Sodexho, Elior and Compass. The
contract catering business increased 5.6 percent in 2008, compared to 2007, and is expected
to continue growing. In 2008, the sector was severely hit by an increase in the price of raw
materials and companies withdrew from non-profitable segments and began new strategies for
segments offering more potential.
In 2008, about one-third of company restaurants served organic food and this figure is
estimated to reach over 71 percent by 2012. In 2008, sales of organic foods by company
restaurants amounted to 44 million euros ($64.7 million). The goal of the French Government
is to reach 20 percent of organic foods sales in schools and universities by 2012.
Concession catering includes transportation catering (highways, railway stations and airports),
as well as in-town and leisure catering (museums, exhibition and sport centers). According to
industry analysts, this segment increased at an annual rate of 3.6 percent from 1996 to 2008
and is expected to grow at a rate of 4 percent annually through 2010.
The Sodexho group is the largest company in this segment, immediately followed by Elior
group, the Compass group (mainly supplying airports), Autogrill (highways and railway
stations) and Horeto (city sites and leisure sites).
Air and Sea Catering
In France, the major supplier in this segment is Servair (subsidiary of Air France). Most of the
food purchased by Servair is of French origin. Second, but far behind, is Catair, a subsidiary of
Eurest (Compass Group).
The leader in France for sea catering is Cofrapex (subsidiary of Metro/Cash and Carry). The
major competitor of Cofrapex is SHRM (Societe Hoteliere de Restauration Maritime), which was
bought in 1998 by the Compass Group.
2.1 Company Profiles
The institutional catering sector in France has three major players (representing 82 percent
market share), 12 medium-sized regional companies and 29 small companies. The tables
below reflect the major groups and businesses in the institutional catering sector.
Major Groups & Businesses in the Institutional Catering Sector During Calendar Year
Rank Group/Firm Total Sales % Number of Meals % Change
Sales Change Restaurants Served Meals
in 2008/2007 in 2008 Served
2008 (In 2008/2007
1 Group 3,213 +21.9 6,192 363 +11.2
2 Group Elior 2,161 +6.6 4,098 294 +4.2
3 Compass 1,624 +3.9 2,431 190 +0.4
4 Group API 316 +19.0 1,232 69 +15.1
5 Groupe 190 +7.8 543 34 +3.1
6 Groupe 179 +7.9 434 32 +5.3
7 Resteco 78 +10.1 150 16 --
8 Multi 69 +10.5 -- -- --
9 R2C (Casino 56 +15.7 69 6 +24.2
10 Apetito 54 +10.0 132 6 +10.3
Sources: Trade and Neo-Restauration April 2009: page 40.
-- = Not Available
(*) Includes Sodexho, Sogeres, Group Score, RGC, La Normande, Siges.
(**) Includes Avenance, LRP, and Vivae
(***) Includes Eurest, Medirest, Scolarest, Regiself and Sorema
Major Companies in the Health and Elderly Care Segment
Sodexho leads this sector with increased sales of 9.5 percent and 100 million meals served in
2008, an increase of 3.6 percent compared to 2007. Experts forecast that steady growth in
this segment will continue due to institutional demands for caring for an aging population.
According to the French Institute for Statistics (INSEE), France should have 14 million people
over 60 years old in 2010, and 17 million in 2020. Opportunities exist for U.S. suppliers of
frozen foods, semi-prepared foods or sides, and prepared meals.
Rank Group/Firm Sales in Sales % Total Meals % Changed Meals
2008 Change served Served 2008/2007
(In 2008/2007 (In Million)
1 Sodexho France 832 +9.5 100 +3.6
2 Avenance (Elior N/A -- 59 +1.9
3 Nedirest (Group N/A -- 49 +1.2
4 Group Api 147 +21.2 32 +18
5 Sogeres *Group 119 +16.4 15 +7.9
6 Dupont Restauration 64 +7.2 9 +3.4
7 Ansamble Group 51 -9.0 8 +3.6
Source: Trade ? Neo Restauration April 2009
N/A: Not Available
Top Companies in the Education (School and University) Segment
This segment showed overall growth of about 4 percent in 2008. Few opportunities exist for
U.S. suppliers due to low per-meal costs.
Rank Group/Firm Total Sales % Change Meals % Change Meals
in 2008 Sales Served in Served 2008/2007
(In Million 2008/2007 2008
$) (In Million)
1 Avenance (Elior N/A -- 134 +3.6
2 Sodexho France 411 +4.6 80 +1.0
3 Scolarest (Compass N/A -- 61 -0.7
4 Sogeres (Sodexho) 173 +1.0 30 +0.3
5 Group API 98 +12.0 28 +9.9
6 Ansamble 70 +16.5 17 +2.6
7 Dupont Restauration 56 +12.8 11 +10.0
Sources: Trade and Neo-Restauration April 2009
N/A: Not Available
Top Groups/Firms in the Company Catering Segment
During 2008, the sector showed overall growth in number of meals served and offers
opportunities for U.S. suppliers of sophisticated, innovative and quality semi-prepared meals,
including meat, fish and seafood.
Rank Group/Firm Total Sales % Change Total % Changed Meals
in 2008 Sales Meals served 2008/2007
(In Million 2008/2007 Served in
1 Avenance (Group N/A -- 101 +6.4
2 Eurest (Compass N/A -- 80 +0.7
3 Sodexho France 797 -0.9 74 -2.8
4 Sogeres (Sodexho) 278 +5.0 21 +0.9
5 Group API 71 +25.0 9 +22.0
6 Group Ansamble 69 +14.8 8 +1.8
7 R2C (Group Casino 56 +15.7 6 +24.5
Source: Neo-Restauration April 2009
N/A: Not Available
Other Institutional Catering Sector: Army and Prisons
Sales in army and prison institution catering were rather insignificant and represented only one
percent of the institutional market sector. Lack of available data makes it difficult to project
annual growth. Opportunities for U.S. suppliers in this segment are limited.
2.2 Entry Strategy
The diagram below indicates product flow in this market segment.
Major operators from the institutional catering sector often buy through central buying offices
to ensure that all sanitary and health requirements are met. These central buying offices
negotiate with potential suppliers based on specific requirements. Suppliers are selected
primarily on the basis of price and quality.
3. Competition in the Commercial and Institutional Sectors
Domestic food and beverage products dominate the French HRI sector. 75 percent of imports
originate from EU member countries which have several advantages in terms of reduced tariffs
and transportation costs relative to third country imported products. The table below shows
the major supply sources of imported food and beverages.
Import Major Suppliers Market Summary
Market in 2008
Fish and seafood 4.4 U.K., Norway, U.K. and Norway are both very price
Spain, Denmark, competitive and able to supply the fish and
Netherlands, USA seafood varieties demanded by local
Sauces, salad 1.2 EU countries Price competitive and no custom duties.
dressings and USA However, the US is able to supply a variety
seasonings of ethnic/regional sauces.
Canned fruits 1.8 West and Eastern Price competitive. No duties for EU
and vegetables Europe and Morocco imports.
Bison meat N/A Canada Although France is beginning to produce
USA bison meat, Canada remains the major
supplier. US bison meat is less price
competitive than the Canadian meat.
Wine 0.8 Italy, Spain, Price competitive since no duties inside the
Portugal and New EU. However, "exoticism" and quality
World wines, create opportunities for US wines.
Fruit juices 1.2 Brazil, Spain, USA Lower prices from Brazil and Spain.
However, Florida juices have a good
Ethnic Foods N/A China, Japan, India, Rising sales of Tex-Mex products.
Africa, USA Opportunities exist for other US/regional
cuisines, such as cajun.
Ready-to-eat 1.2 EU countries. China, France is a large manufacturer of ready-to-
meals Japan, India, Africa eat meals. Imports from other countries
offer competitive prices.
Dried fruits and 0.8 USA, Turkey, Israel, Lower prices from key supply countries.
nuts Iran However, US products dominate in almonds
Fresh fruits 6.6 Spain, Italy, Preference is given to EU suppliers and
(including Morocco, Israel, neighborhood countries having special tariff
grapefruits & South Africa and rates. However, Florida grapefruit is a
exotic fruits USA. market favorite.
Rice 0.5 Thailand, China, Thailand, China and India offer quality and
India, USA low price products. The US mostly exports
brown rice. Biotech testing is a constraint.
Dry legumes 0.2 China, Canada, France grows lentils but imports most all
(peas, lentils and Turkey, Argentina, other dry legumes (beans, and peas). US
beans) USA competitors offer lower prices. The US
advantage is quality and variety.
4. Best Product Prospects
Food purchases for the HRI sector increased by 17 percent between 2001 and 2008. During
the same period, sales in the frozen foods sector alone grew by 26 percent. This is a result of
quality improvement in frozen foods along with a price policy making frozen foods more
attractive compared to fresh products.
Best opportunities for U.S. frozen foods in the HRI sector are for fish and seafood, meat, fruits
and vegetables, frozen deserts (such as cakes and ice creams), ready-to-eat meals and
Other opportunities for U.S. suppliers include: fruit juices and soft drinks (including flavored
spring waters), dried fruits and nuts, fresh fruits including grapefruits and exotic fruits,
vegetables, frozen foods (ready-to-eat meals and specialty products), snack foods, tree nuts,
ethnic products, seafood, soups, breakfast cereals, bison meat, and pulses. There is also a
demand for salad dressings, tomato sauces and spices.
5. Key Contacts and Further Information
Internet Home Pages
Internet home pages of potential interest to U.S. food and beverage exporters are listed
U.S. Mission to the European Union http://useu.usmission.gov/agri/usda.html
European Importer Directory www.american-foods.org
Web site for Professional Trade Shows and Events http://www.salons-online.com
If you have any questions or comments regarding this report, or need assistance exporting to
France, please contact the U.S. Agricultural Affairs Office in Paris at:
Foreign Agricultural Service
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Embassy of the United States of America
2, avenue Gabriel
75382 Paris, Cedex 08, France