France battles against bad restaurant food - WDRB 41 Louisville News

France battles against bad restaurant food

Posted: Updated:
(AP Photo/Ministere de l'Artisanat du Commerce et du Tourisme). This logo, in two black and white versions,  provided Wednesday July, 16, 2014 by the French Trade Ministry shows the new symbol  indicating your menu choice is made in-house. (AP Photo/Ministere de l'Artisanat du Commerce et du Tourisme). This logo, in two black and white versions, provided Wednesday July, 16, 2014 by the French Trade Ministry shows the new symbol indicating your menu choice is made in-house.
(AP Photo/Francois Mori ). French Chef Pierre Meneau works in the kitchen of his restaurant Crom'Exquis in Paris, France, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (AP Photo/Francois Mori ). French Chef Pierre Meneau works in the kitchen of his restaurant Crom'Exquis in Paris, France, Wednesday, July 16, 2014.
(AP Photo/Francois Mori ). French Chef Pierre Meneau checks the sharpness of his knife in the kitchen of his restaurant Crom'Exquis in Paris, France, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (AP Photo/Francois Mori ). French Chef Pierre Meneau checks the sharpness of his knife in the kitchen of his restaurant Crom'Exquis in Paris, France, Wednesday, July 16, 2014.
  • U.S. & World NewsMore>>

  • Bodies of Malaysia jet victims to leave Ukraine

    Bodies of Malaysia jet victims to leave Ukraine

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 3:43 AM EDT2014-07-23 07:43:44 GMT
    Ukraine is preparing a departure ceremony for the bodies of victims of the Malaysia Airlines disaster, which are being flown to the Netherlands.More >>
    Ukraine prepared a departure ceremony for the bodies of Malaysia Airlines passengers and crew who became victims of fighting raging far below them on the plains of eastern Ukraine.More >>
  • Agents get subsidized 'Obamacare' using fake IDs

    Agents get subsidized 'Obamacare' using fake IDs

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 3:36 AM EDT2014-07-23 07:36:44 GMT
    Congress will hear testimony Wednesday detailing how undercover investigators used fake identities to get taxpayer-subsidized health insurance under President Barack Obama's law.More >>
    Undercover investigators using fake identities were able to secure taxpayer-subsidized health insurance under President Barack Obama's health care law.More >>
  • House, Senate chart separate courses on border

    House, Senate chart separate courses on border

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 3:36 AM EDT2014-07-23 07:36:24 GMT
    Senate Democrats and House Republicans are moving separately to slash President Barack Obama's $3.7 billion emergency spending request for the southern border, but they're unlikely to end up with a deal...More >>
    Senate Democrats and House Republicans are moving separately to slash President Barack Obama's $3.7 billion emergency spending request for the border, but they're unlikely to end up with a deal that could pass both...More >>
By LOUISE DEWAST
Associated Press

PARIS (AP) - Restaurant-goers in France will start seeing a funny little symbol on their menus this week: a skillet with a house on top, indicating your menu choice is made in-house.

It's part of a new law meant to battle against the surprising amount of factory-made, pre-packaged food in French restaurants, and celebrate the country's culinary traditions.

However, many in the industry say the law doesn't go far enough, because it allows dishes made from frozen, pre-peeled or pre-cut products to count as home-made.

France's chief of consumer affairs, Carole Delga, told The Associated Press that the logo would better inform customers about what they're getting, and highlight restaurants' craftsmanship.

"It's about sending a message that France is a country where we eat well, where we have skills, especially cooking skills," she said. "We wanted to give concrete tools for tourists and for French people, and recognize cooking as an integral part of our French identity."

While UNESCO put French cuisine on its World Heritage List in 2010, two recessions in recent years have driven more and more French chefs to resort to pre-packaged food to cut costs. And France is a champion of industrial food, with companies specialized in frozen foods or dishes that can be prepared quickly and look homemade.

Alain Dutournier, cook and spokesman for the Culinary College of France, a non-profit supporting French gastronomy, is among those who think the law makes it too easy for restaurants to claim a dish is home-made.

"It's really not very serious. I thought it would be more rigorous and precise," he said. "Once again they are choosing to serve the interest of the food-processing industry."

Diners at Crom'Exquis, a restaurant in Paris' 8th arrondissement, gave the new law mixed reviews. Anne-Laure Bernard called it "a great tool."

There is an exception for potatoes. Dubbed by French media the "McDonald's exception," it means that no one making French fries out of pre-peeled potatoes can claim to be "home-made."

Parliament approved the law March 17, and it came into effect this week. Restaurants and catering companies have until Jan. 1 to adapt their menus.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WDRB. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.