posted by Simon Kemp
While we’re on the subject of newspapers, here’s another report, in English this time, that might interest you. The Guardian reports that, following a call to French citizens from a government minister to support the country’s economic recovery by buying French products, one person decided to do just that. Exclusively.
Journalist and documentary-maker Benjamin Carle set out to live for ten months using, living with, and eating exclusively made-in-France products. It turned out to be harder than he’d imagined:
“He set just three rules: eat only foods produced in France, eliminate contact with foreign-made goods and do so on €1,800 a month (above the minimum wage of €1,430 to cover the extra expense of living in Paris).
The journalist was shocked to find out at the start of the experiment that only 4.5% of the contents of his flat were made nationally – and that the rest would have to go, including the lightbulbs (China) and green beans (Kenya).
The removal men left his home almost bare.
Left without a refrigerator (none are made in France), or nail clippers, he was forced to chill his food on the window ledge and saw at his toenails with a penknife.
His foreign-made clothes, down to his underwear were replaced with more expensive, alternatives: French-produced underpants (€26), socks (€9), polo shirt (€75), espadrille sandals (€26), but no jeans as none are produced in France.
On discovering France makes no refrigerators (apart from wine coolers) or televisions, but is big in aeroplane seats and windmills, he sighs and says: “Great. Nothing that will fit into my apartment.”
You can read the full report here, and discover why he made it to only 96.9% French. There’s also an embedded clip from the TV documentary he made about the experiment.