Several food industry or hygiene product manufacturers announced on Wednesday an increase in their donations in kind to associations which organize aid to the most deprived, after appeals launched by the Restos du Cœur and the Red Cross, against a backdrop of inflation of food prices. Manufacturers of pasta, preserves, biscuits or dairy products Barilla, D'Aucy, Mondelez, Danone, Panzani and manufacturers of hygiene and cosmetic products such as Essity and L'Oréal have increased their donations "by 600 tonnes deliverable immediately" , indicated Tuesday the office of Minister of Industry Roland Lescure. Panzani thus donated 200,000 packets of pasta, specifies a press release from the French leader in the sector.
Roland Lescure and the National Association of Food Industries (ANIA) urged the sector to mobilize on Monday, after the call for help launched on Sunday by the Restos du Cœur and on Monday by the Red Cross. In the afternoon, the Minister of Agriculture Marc Fesneau brought together "the entire food chain" - farmers, associations, industrialists and distributors - to "facilitate dialogue between them", he declared to the press. after the meeting. “The main subject of the donation is the logistical capacity to collect these donations”, in particular for fresh products, whose consumption times are short, underlined Marc Fesneau. “The associations need a million liters of milk in a fairly short time. How do we ensure that this need is met?"
Same problem for fruits and vegetables: the Solaal association, which organizes donations between farmers and food aid associations, had "70 tonnes of broccoli to pick up in Finistère" and did not "find anyone to do it" , he said. Present at the meeting, the president of the Rungis International Market, Stéphane Layani, welcomed a "totally unprecedented initiative", with the meeting "for the first time" of all the players. “Operators give every day, but we are in France, we need the state to organize.”
Providing 35% of food aid in France, restaurants have already welcomed 1.3 million people since the beginning of 2023 compared to 1.1 million for the whole of last year. The Red Cross noted a 7% increase in requests for aid in the first half of the year compared to the first six months of 2022, a year itself marked by a 22% jump in requests compared to 2021. At Secours Populaire, the requests for aid have increased "by 20 to 40%" depending on the territory. The state has promised additional aid of 15 million euros to associations. The Crédit Mutuel foundation pledged 12.5 million euros after paying 5 million in March. The Arnault family (LVMH) announced €10 million in aid and TotalEnergies donated €5 million.