Consumers in France can breathe easily again. From this weekend their daily bread is no longer at risk from naughty bakers who have had the audacity to take some time off.
The French media have been whipping their readers into a frenzy over government attempts to deregulate industry. Commentators have been frothing at the mouth over the possibility of bakers taking a holiday whenever they like.
Since the French revolution, boulangeries have been obliged to let local authorities know if they were to close in July or August. They even faced fines if they set off without leaving a sign alerting bread-devotees to where the nearest bakery could be found.
Now, Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron is loosening the state’s grip on such matters. It is all part of the government’s plans to make it simpler to do business in France. Other initiatives include easing the restrictions on Sunday trading.
“Since the French revolution, boulangeries have been obliged to let local authorities know if they were to close in July or August”
Some two-thirds of bakers are thought to have taken a holiday this summer – up from around half in previous years. With the news agenda a little slow in August, it’s not so surprising that the media having been having fun with this story.
Pastry-dependent readers have, of course, been reminded that supermarkets sell bread. However, as many of us know, it is rarely as good as that found in a neighbourhood bakery.