This new wand war

Michel-Édouard Leclerc is happy. Inflation is back, and here he is who has put on his favorite costume for a few weeks, that of the savior of our purchasing power. Milk, pork, self-tests, everything, everything on the shelves of Leclerc stores will be offered at advantageous prices to the French, he promises. And even the wand. Hold on tight, it will be sold, weighed, packaged, at 29 cents on average until the end of June. What noise, since Michel-Édouard Leclerc made this promise on Wednesday January 12 on the airwaves of RMC. “It’s quite a symbol”, got carried away the Breton.

Without difficulty, he alienated the representatives of the cereal producers, the artisan bakers, the farmers in general, and to complete this long list of dissatisfied people, he also offended, him the number one in France, his distributor competitors. Because, no, in fact, Michel-Édouard Leclerc is not the only one to offer such prices.

We earn money, even by displaying a price of 29 euro cents.

It is possible to buy a 250 gram baguette for less than 45 cents in all the supermarkets in France. That is two times cheaper than the average price observed by INSEE. “The French do not specifically go to the supermarket to buy a baguette. They take it in addition to their shopping, mainly during the week, and for dinner. On weekends, they prefer to buy individual pastries from us rather than bread,” a French distributor told us.

The latter, like his colleagues questioned by Point, emphasizes that the bread produced by its teams of bakers is made largely with French flour. One of Leclerc’s competitors, mischievous: “And imagine that we make money, even by displaying a price of 29 euro cents. » It could not be otherwise, as large retailers cannot sell at a loss, because their cheap baguettes are made on site.

READ ALSO:  Definition of the Federal Reserve System (FRS)

READ ALSOThe Specter of Sustained Inflation


According to the Observatory of Price and Margin Formation (OFPM), the bakery and pastry department of distributors has a gross margin in relation to turnover of 56.4% against 24 to 32.9% for the other past departments. on the Loup.

In detail, Michel-Édouard Leclerc ensures that flour weighs 14% in the purchase price. What the professional craftsmen do not dispute, moreover. A third of the final price would fund the salaries of the bakers. It is thanks to the large number of baguettes sold each day that large retailers can display more attractive prices than craftsmen, by achieving economies of scale on the cost of energy, rents, etc.

But beware, there is baguette and baguette. Some discounters do not have teams of bakers kneading the dough on site, but cook frozen dough pieces purchased on average at 15 cents from manufacturers (Panavi, Neuhauser, Vandemoertle, etc.).

In autumn 2022, Unesco should decide whether or not to register the baguette as a universal heritage. An idea pushed by the Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot, who thus justified her choice in the columns of echoes : “The baguette is a noble and deceptively simple product, it takes years, from a few ingredients, to find its signature…, its style! This product brings us together and it is for this reason that I chose it. »

259 euros is the price of a ton of soft wheat.

90 cents. This is the average price in November of a 250 gram baguette according to INSEE, which is based on a panel of varied sellers (bakeries, bread depots, supermarkets, etc.)

READ ALSO:  Stocks to watch tomorrow on the Paris Stock Exchange Wednesday, December 1, 2021

In 20 years, the baguette has increased by 35% against a general increase of 30% on average for the rest of food products.

10 billion euros. This is the annual turnover of all French artisan bakers and bakers-pastry chefs, who hold a 55% market share.

About the author

Mark Holland

Leave a comment: