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Cost of bread


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I have heard from many sources that the price of bread is set by the French Government and that every village must have daily access to a supply - dates from as far back as the Revolution I suppose.

Can anyone tell me what the set cost is for a 200 gm baguette for example as I have paid all prices between 38 and 75 centimes. I know supermarkets charge very low prices as a come on and artisans will charge a fair price for their expertise but I was just wondering as a matter of interest what the set price really is and who decides when and by how much it goes up with inflation.

It varies in quality as well - in a large village or town where there is a choice you always know the "best" bread by the long queue outside a particular boulangerie

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I'm not sure if it's regulated now but it must have been in the past as I vividly remember the bloody   (as in 'sanguinaire')   'guerre des baguettes'  25 years ago when a boulanger (from Toulon I think it was) plotted a 'coup' by suddenly slashing the price of a baguette to less than 1 Franc. On this Carrefour and the likes counter-attacked with their '50 centimes' baguette-weapon and 'bigger-than-ever' pain, etc. The 'Ordre des Boulangers' (or if it's not called as such, it should be !) waded in of course, on the lines of: 'what an outcry ! We cannot let one bad apple sell the French patrimoine down the river, we must fight any putsch from within'. The Army nearly had to intervene; soon order was restored, all renegades were brought to book, all boulangers were under strict order to 'maintain reasonable levels of prices', and 'la guerre des baguettes' was history. Should be in all French History textbooks that one.

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