HappyCow Guide
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Regional Information on France

France, Europe
Regional Notes - Events - Gatherings & Groups - Travel Information

HappyCow previously offered this space for vegetarian events, vegetarian travel or general information for France, suggestions such as hotel recommendations, travel agencies, or any other regional vegan and vegetarian related information.
However, this has been discontinued due to inactivity.
For restaurant reviews, go to the listings page.


Visitor Notes:

Subject: 'General shopping tips'
Posted by Guest on: Monday, September 11, 2006 at 05:57 AM PST
In France the emphasis is very much on ‘organic’ rather than vegetarian, the equivalent of a wholefood shop, selling bulk products, being an ‘alimentation biologique’, most of which sell meat. A health food store, selling mainly supplements and remedies is an ‘alimenation diététique’. Many shops encompass both, the most common being the franchise chains ‘Le Rayon Vert’ and ‘La Vie Claire’. Most sizeable towns will have a branch of one or the other.

Buying soya milk, desserts and yogurts is not difficult as most supermarkets stock them, Alpro being the most common brand as it is manufactured in France. However dairy ingredients are far more commonly used than in Britain. Some breads contain milk derivatives and almost all biscuits contain butter. In addition, if you are looking for some sweeties to take back to the office, the only ones I’ve managed to find that don’t contain gelatine are Vichy mints (basically just sugar and peppermint oil), which also come in a lemon flavour. ‘Le Petit Marseillais’ brand toiletries are vegan, indeed any soap labelled as ‘savon de Marseille’ should be ‘100% végétal’, however some supermarket own-brand ones are made from tallow so check!

Monoprix is the most common department store / supermarket to be found in town centres. In medium-sized towns like Cannes, La Rochelle and Narbonne, it’s the only ‘alimentation’ that opens throughout the day and into the early evening. You can buy all the stuff mentioned above there, usually a bit cheaper than in the specialist shops. You’ll also be able to buy French beers like Jenlain (bottled and corked like wine) which are vegan as they are neither filtered nor pasteurised.

Subject: 'Vegetarian gourmet food in Normandy!'
Posted by Guest on: Monday, March 27, 2006 at 08:32 PM PST
No one should visit this area of france without eating at la maison du vert, In a tiny village called Ticheville, we ate outside in their lovely gardens, what a treat. The food was beautifully presented, lots of it from thier own garden (all organic) and it tasted truly delicious. They have a hotel too, next time we will know where to stay! Bryony Wright, Portsmouth UK

Subject: 'vegetalien vs. vegetarien'
Posted by Guest on: Friday, December 09, 2005 at 11:23 AM PST
Vegetalien(ne) is the word for vegan, and vegetarien(ne) is vegetarian. However, it is good to remember that French people often think that vegetarians eat fish, so it's good to point out if you don't. The French word for meat, la viande, usually only refers to red meat, and people are often baffled if you say you don't eat chicken or fish, either. A little patience goes a long way! There are few vegetarians in France, so you may get tired of having to do a lot of explaining. But speaking as a vegetarian who lived in France for more than five years, there's plenty to make it worthwhile! Vegans are best off if they have a way to do their own cooking, even more so than in other countries.

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