Would you buy meat from a machine? Residents watch the first meat vending machine installed in the French capital, in Paris, Tuesday, March 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)
Would you buy meat from a machine?
Lexile

Parisians can get their beloved baguette 24 hours a day. So it seems only logical that they can now get the Bayonne ham and Basque pate that goes so well with the bread. It comes from the first meat vending machine installed in the French capital.

Paris is filled with small shops where long lunches remain a crucial part of the French "art de vivre." So the gleaming red machine set up on the lively Rue de Charonne in eastern Paris seems a bit incongruous.

The area has at least two dozen butcher's shops and no shortage of meat. But that didn't deter the owners of one of those shops, Florence and Michel Pouzol of "L'ami Txulette," from investing 40,000 euros ($45,000) to set up their project. They sell vacuum-packed meat from the refrigerated machine.

"We're closed two days: Sundays and Mondays," Florence Pouzol told The Associated Press. "So this is to cater for customers over the weekend. The idea was also to serve people after the shop's closing hours. We close at 8 p.m. But some people leave work very late and find the shop closed when they walk past it."

L'ami Txulette specializes in products from the Basque Country. Their machine takes cash or credit cards. Customers can also get a large choice of traditional delicatessen. This includes duck confit and beef carpaccio. There are also faux-filet steaks on display. They are priced at 34 euros per kilogram. On average, the products are 20 euro cents more expensive than those sold inside the shop.

A majority of shops remain closed on Sundays in France. But the Pouzols are confident that France is changing fast and so are their customers' habits.

"Our customers are young. There are also quite a few bars and restaurants along the boulevard," Florence Pouzol said. "When we see them during the day. They tell us: "Last night, I bought this, or that, and it was really helpful." We also have those who work in the cafes and restaurants and who come off work at 2 a.m. They tell us they were happy to buy an entrecote or something else to eat."

But not all residents, especially the older ones, seem ready for this change. They are not likely to stop running errands at their favorite shop and switch to the meat dispenser.

"I'm so happy that I can actually go to the butcher's shop now that I'm retired and go there in person", said local resident Lydie Aparacio. "I think that it can be useful for people who are busier than a retiree. I don't use it because I have time."

Baguette dispensers have been enjoying a large success across France over the past five years. But the meat vending machines business remains in in the developing stage in France. The first machine of this type was installed three years ago. It was installed in the small western town of Garat.  A butcher set it up outside a bar.

According to the bar owner, it adds extra comfort in an area lacking services.

"We don't have a butcher's shop in town, the first one is located three kilometers (two miles) away," Jo Ferreira told the AP in a phone interview. "When you finish work at 7 p.m., it's very convenient to have this machine available. I love their minced burger steaks."

In the central medieval town of Mennetou-sur-Cher, popular with tourists, Pascal Bidron has installed a machine to sell his locally made andouillette, a sausage prepared with pig's intestines.

He bought a second-hand machine and put it next to his shop, which is closed for more than three hours during the daytime.

"I have customers coming from afar to buy my andouillettes and I wanted to serve them even when the shop is closed" Bidron told the AP. "I recently went away for two weeks and managed to sell 250 andouillettes during my vacation thanks to that machine. It's more than I expected."

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why are French shops closed on Sundays?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (86)
  • ben0424-yyca-byo
    3/30/2016 - 10:53 p.m.

    The idea of a vending machine selling meat is a unique idea. There are not many strange things like meat being sold in vending machines that I know. All I know is the typical drink and chip machine. I think that having other things, like maybe ice cream, or even shirts in vending machines, might be interesting to have. Having strange things are a good idea that I would like to give for people to consider.
    Critical Thinking Question Answer: French shops are closed on Sundays, because possibly for religious regions. Or maybe they want a day off for the week. This might be a reason for them being closed.

  • mitchl-knu
    3/31/2016 - 01:40 p.m.

    I would buy the meat because it will take way less time then going into the shop. You could be walking late at night when most places are closed then you could walk up to that and you would be able to get meat.

  • jakej-knu
    3/31/2016 - 01:41 p.m.

    I hope this doesn't come to the US. Facebook will probably buy it and make you connect to the machine to buy meat

  • anthonyg1-ver
    3/31/2016 - 04:53 p.m.

    Wow that is cool and I will totally buy meat from the machine in there is a quick was to warm it up...

  • olgan-4-bar
    4/01/2016 - 01:48 a.m.

    French shops are closed on Sundays because it is the resting day of everyone. All of the shops, restaurants and even pharmacies are closed. The article states "We're closed two days: Sundays and Mondays," Florence Pouzol told The Associated Press. So this is to cater for customers over the weekend. The idea was also to serve people after the shop's closing hours." I would not buy meat from this machine because I personally hardly eat any meat and am extremely picky about the quality of it so buying it from vending machines is not even a consideration to me and I find it quite disgusting that dead animal bodies are sitting in a box, waiting to be bought.

  • gregorys-6-bar
    4/01/2016 - 08:32 a.m.

    French shops are closed on Sundays because according to the bible Sunday is the day of rest. The shops may have Christian owners or workers so following their religion might make them not work. This is more common in Europe because almost everyone is apart of a religion over there. I thought this article was very cool in bringing up an advancement in technology working with food.

  • paulo-hol
    4/01/2016 - 09:54 p.m.

    This is really cool now people can get the things they need fast and easy at any time of the day.

  • daevonted-wes
    4/04/2016 - 02:43 p.m.

    I say no ,Because the meat could be expired but if they had expiration dates then yes because I would know. #NO

  • allenm-pay
    4/05/2016 - 10:50 a.m.

    this article is basically about the special vending machine that disposes meat and ham. Pascal Bidron has installed a machine to sell his locally made andouillette, a sausage prepared with pig's intestines.
    He bought a second-hand machine and put it next to his shop, which is closed for more than three hours during the daytime. The area has at least two dozen butcher's shops and no shortage of meat. But that didn't deter the owners of one of those shops, Florence and Michel Pouzol of "L'ami Txulette," from investing 40,000 euros ($45,000) to set up their project. They sell vacuum-packed meat from the refrigerated machine. This is the evolution of the meat industry.

  • joseg-jen
    4/06/2016 - 02:50 p.m.

    How did they make that happen to that machine?

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