Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Baguette Vending Machines

Photographed by Loire Valley Time Travel.

Increasingly, as the population in rural France ages and declines, village bakeries are struggling. Yet French law demands that everyone have access to fresh bread. When a bakery closes, often when the baker retires and no one takes the business over, small villages are often left with no supplier of bread.

Charnizay, Indre et Loire.

The solution for many small local authorities is to arrange a partnership with a bakery in a nearby village and to install a baguette vending machine. The neighbouring bakery replenishes the stock a couple of times a day and the bread costs maybe 5 cents more than if you bought it in the shop.

This one at Charnizay has become an informal meeting place, where locals gather for a chat and to pick up the daily bread. The baguettes on offer are the type known as tradition. That is to say, they contain nothing but flour, yeast, salt and water, and have been proved in the old fashioned way that takes time so the yeast provides leavening, flavour and modifies the flour into a loaf that has become legendary worldwide.

The baguettes at Charnizay come from Sophie and Aurélien's bakery in Preuilly so the other day, late home for lunch after an appointment at the radiologists in Loches, we decided to stop off and buy a baguette on our way through.

For details of our private guided tours of chateaux, gardens, wineries, markets and more please visit the Loire Valley Time Travel website. We would be delighted to design a tour for you.


Colin and Elizabeth said...

Nice action shots Simon

melinda said...

how are those baguettes?

Susan said...

And taken with the little camera! He's so talented!!

Susan said...

Very good, just like from the shop, and even slightly warm. They are the proper slow proved sort of just flour, water, salt and yeast.

Katie Zeller said...

I've seen one dispensing pizza but not bread.... We have a bread truck that makes deliveries and we did in the Vendee, as well. What a great idea to have the machine

Susan said...

There's a pizza one in Tours, but not in the little places. My friend Kate (also Australian, also lives in Preuilly) made the point that the machines are superceding the vans and it may not be a great idea from the point of view of keeping tabs on isolated old people. I think a good compromise would be to have La Poste take on bread delivery.

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