Hamburgers invade sit-down restaurants in France


One out of every two sandwiches sold in France last year was a hamburger, but the German-American classic’s runaway success has not been attributed to fast-food restaurants.

The hamburger, a food often associated with the unrefined American palate, is taking French restaurants by storm. Around 970 million meat patties on a bun were sold in France in 2013, a figure that represents half of last year’s sandwich sales, according to a recent study.

The popularity of hamburgers has been steadily increasing since 2000, but has really exploded during the last few years, according to Gira Conseil, the food marketing research firm that conducted the survey.

“The numbers are impressive,” Gira Conseil’s director Bernard Boutboul told the AFP news agency. “In 2000 one out of every nine sandwiches [sold in France] was a hamburger. In 2007 it had risen to one out of seven sandwiches. In 2013, it’s one out of two.”

Surprisingly, the precipitous rise in French hamburger sales – 7.27 million euros worth last year – does not have much to do with the sandwich’s omnipresence on the menus at fast-food eateries. The hamburger’s popularity has largely been attributed to its increasing appearance on the menus of traditional restaurants.

“Seventy-five percent of all traditional restaurants in France offer at least one hamburger on their menu. They have sold 40 percent more hamburgers in the last two years,” Boutboul noted, adding that in one-third of all the sit-down establishments surveyed, hamburgers had become more popular than steak or fish.

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