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Fast food overtakes traditional cuisine in France for the first time

Traditional sit-down restaurants, historically a sacrosanct part of the French way of life, have been dethroned by fast food for the first time, with hamburgers and gourmet sandwiches outselling more classic Gallic cuisine.

Fast food swiped 54 per cent of the market last year for a turnover of 34 billion euros (?29 billion), according to Gira Conseil, an influential food consultancy. The figure represents a huge jump from 2011, when fast food only claimed 40 per cent of overall market share.

"In previous years, we could see fast food was gaining ground, but this is the first time it has overtaken restaurants where you are served at the table," said Julien Jeanneau of Gira Conseil.

Fast food's culinary coup d'Etat was down to the multiplicity of new products on the market, he added.

"Before it was mainly sandwiches and hamburgers, today an array of thematic outlets offering salads, bagels or kebabs are strangling traditional restaurants," he said.

The other nail in the coffin of the sit-down meal is the dwindling amount of time the French ? long reputed to be lovers of the long lunch ? spend on their meals.

The average time spent on meal in France has dropped from an hour and 20 minutes in 1975 to half an hour today, according to Gira.

France's tradition of the three-course restaurant lunch, washed down with a bottle of wine, was long seen as a civilised way of distinguishing the country's well-fed workers from the desk-bound English and their BLT sandwiches.

But another recent survey suggests the French now take just 22 minutes to wolf down their midday meal.

The result, it said is that the French are increasingly turning into a nation of nibblers.

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"But another recent survey suggests the French now take just 22 minutes to wolf down their midday meal."

And that's a bad thing? I eat my meals in less than 10 minutes and they are quite big meals.

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i expect for more fatness happens in france

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All part of our plan to get rid of the frenchies :shifty:

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"But another recent survey suggests the French now take just 22 minutes to wolf down their midday meal."

And that's a bad thing? I eat my meals in less than 10 minutes and they are quite big meals.

It means the time previously spent savouring the meal and enjoying the company of others is now being used for other purposes - that might mean work, it might mean entertainment, but is signifies a cultural shift. What was previously a significant event has now become much more utilitarian. Just because one can eat a meal in less than ten minutes does not mean that it's best to do so.

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United States of France here we come

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The last bastion of civilization has just fallen.

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