French food processors shifting

The French food industry is looking hard at changing tastes. For one thing, statistics that show food expenditures in France have dropped to 20 percent of consumer spending -- against a much higher percentage figure in the '60s and '70 s. For another, other-country food processors are making inroads against old-time standbys (frozen foods against canned goods).

And France, whose annual food sales of $60 billion lead all of Europe, has set out to bolster the whole industry by aiming to get a new share of business from the world of exports. It has established a ministry to work with domestic food processors in which direct government subsidies will be available for increased export performance. Companies that can double their exports over a three- to five- year period will become eligible. Prospective qualifiers are required to develop forecasts, plus a solid and specific plan to meet goals.

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