“Do as I say, not as I do.” From January 1, 2024, holders of meal vouchers will no longer be able to use them to purchase non-directly consumable foods in supermarkets. By this, we mean products that need to be cooked to be eaten, such as pasta, rice, flour, eggs or even fresh meat and fish. On the other hand, it will always be possible to obtain prepared meals and salads, sandwiches, pizzas, quiches… In short, foods processed by manufacturers. The only positive point in this bleak picture is that vegetables and fruits will remain on the list of eligible products.
Updated November 14 at 8:30 p.m. : It will ultimately remain possible to use meal vouchers to pay for all food shopping, announced the Minister for Commerce Olivia Grégoire, while the list of eligible products was to be shortened on January 1, 2024. Several parliamentarians and number of users have been concerned in recent days about restrictions on the use of these titles.
In reality, it is an exemption taken within the framework of the law of August 16, 2022 for the protection of purchasing power which is about to end on December 31, 2023. This measure allowed meal vouchers to be used ” to pay all or part of the price of any food product, whether or not it is directly consumable. A response, at the time, to the inflationary surge and the consequences of Covid-19.
How to revive homemade
The government has not yet ruled out the possibility of extending this “exception” and it would be in its interest to do so. This would be in line with his desire to protect “eating well”. In recent months, the Minister of Commerce and SMEs, Olivia Grégoire, has spoken on several occasions about the virtues of “homemade”. In September, she even put forward the idea, in an interview with South West, to introduce cooking classes at school: “We need to relearn how to cook raw products, to avoid buying ‘ready-made’ products, which are more expensive.”
More expensive products, but above all bad for your health, as L’Express recently demonstrated in its recent investigation into ultra-processed foods. The minister also intends to strengthen the presence of the “homemade” label in restaurants. So why not encourage the 5 million meal voucher users to cook at home with fresh produce? Especially since with the development of teleworking, the French are demanding it. It’s also a way of reviving the craze for small dishes prepared at home, born during confinement, when restaurants and company canteens closed the curtain.