A network of 18 Wholesale markets (« Marché d’Intérêt National » – MIN) organizes the distribution of fresh products in France. It represents 35% of the French food distribution market.
What is a MIN?
MINs were created in 1953 after World War II in conditions of food scarcity. They allowed for the modernization and efficiency of food distribution channels. They also united supply and demand under the same roof.
Nowadays, MINs still participate in urbanfresh food supply. Wholesalers, producers and importers of farm products and fresh food can be operators in these markets. Clients are mostly retailers, traditional and collective caterers, and work councils. Additionally, central purchasing offices of food mass distribution can interact with MINs. Market users have to pay a tax to the market manager. They also have to respect the requirements that the market manager and local authorities put in place: hours during which each product can be sold, control of the volume and quantity of products sold, control of installations etc…
All kinds of products can be found in MINs: fruits and vegetables, seafood products, meat products, catered products, dairy products, beverages, and wine, and even flowers.
Key facts on MINs
– 560 ha space
– 4 300 producers
– 5 million tons of food sold each year
– 26 000 full-time employees
– 57 000 buyers
– $16 billion in sales a year
– $53 million of investment a year
Rungis International Market
The most famous French MIN is Rungis International Market. It is the world’s biggest food market with 1.5 million tons of food sold each year and a turnover of $9.5 billion. 65% of products are distributed in Paris and its surroundings, 25% to the rest of France and 10% are exported.
This market also develops actions to promote local products, French gastronomy and food diversity and raises awareness on several issues such as food safety, the environmental footprint and food security. For example, Rungis International market gives unsold fruits and vegetables to a food-aid association which employs people in return.
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