Burger King returns to Paris a day early

Lovers of a 'Le Whopper' in Paris had a nice surprise on Monday when Burger King made its long awaited return to the capital earlier than expected. The new restaurant is just the start of Burger King's attempts to take a huge bite out of France's fast food market.

Burger King returns to Paris a day early
Burger King opened its doors in Paris a day earlier than expected on Monday. Photo: Anne Chrsitine Poujoulat/AFP

The new Burger King in St Lazare station was originally due to open on Tuesday but the fast food giant took everyone by surprise on Monday when it decided to open its doors a day early.

The move was revealed by the site Fast and Food on Monday morning and then later confirmed by Burger King’s press office.

"Burger King will open today at 4pm instead of tomorrow," read the tweet from FastandFood.

The news of the early opening caused a fair amount of excitement on France’s social media sites with the terms St Lazare and Paris trending high on Twitter. It was a sign that Burger King's 15-year absence from the French capital has only increased Parisians' appetite for Le Whopper.

The restaurant was due to open at around 4pm Paris time, giving some of the one million commuters who pass through St Lazare station each day the chance to pick up a whopper on the way home from work.

It will be open seven daysa week from 9.30am until midnight.

After 15 years away, Burger King made a comeback in France in December 2012 when it opened an outlet in Marseille and then shortly after at a motorway service station near Reims.

The opening of a Paris branch has had lovers in the capital licking their lips at the thought of a flame-grilled whopper for the first time since 1997, when the chain was force to close its branches because of poor sales figures.

The fast food giant's return to France was only made possible through a Franchise agreement with Italian restaurant chain Autogrill, to open up outlets in train stations, motorway service stations or airports.

And last month The Local reported how Burger king will not be stopping at St Lazare and now plans to open 400 new restaurants throughout the country. 

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Which towns in France are the most in love with fast food?

A new ranking exposes which towns in France have the biggest love affair with fast food... and it has yielded some surprising results.

Which towns in France are the most in love with fast food?
France may be the food capital of the world and boast hundreds of types of cheese but it is also a fast food heaven. 
And although the French love to decry what they call unhealthy eating (la 'malbouffe'), they spend more in MacDonald's than many other Europeans. In fact, in 2017 the fast food giant made more money in France than anywhere else outside the US.
A new ranking shows that France's 32 biggest cities possess no less than 1,259 fast food outlets. And it may come to a surprise that Bordeaux, a city associated with fine dining and fine wines, comes top with more per person than all other large French cities.


The top three cities with the most fast food joints per population were Bordeaux — a long way ahead — with 54 outlets, Tours in the centre-west of France with 22 and Metz in the east with 25.
Astonishingly, bottom of the list was Marseille –  a gritty southern port city and one of Europe's poorest – just before Le Havre and Saint Denis in the Reunion Island.

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The list, compiled by the health news website, took into account 16 of France's most popular fast food restaurants, which include MacDonald's, Subway and Paul but also Pizza Hut, Quick, Brioche Dorée and KFC.
“This ranking isn't about pointing the finger at our eating habits, but about questioning in a transparent way the impact of these outlets on our eating habits,” according to
“Having a quick snack means you save time, but too often, we forget that the food we eat in these fast food outlets isn't nutritious, and is lacking in vegetable fibre and vitamins and contains a lot of fat, salt and sugar and other chemicals”.
Although Paris vastly outnumbers all other cities in terms of the amount of fast food restaurants with 391, the city is so dense that it only came 5th in the ranking.
With 222 outlets across the country, MacDonald's has more restaurants than all the other chains listed, followed by the other US fast food restaurant Subway with 165. The French bakery Paul came third with 137 outlets nationwide.
Expanding waistlines
A report from September 2018 revealed how France's secret love for fast food is starting to show itself on the public's waistlines, with the country set to become home to 30 million obese and overweight people by 2030.
Fast food is increasingly taking over France's tables, something which is believed to be down to the lack of time for a proper lunch and the arrival — and popularity — of online food delivery companies such as Deliveroo and Uber Eats. 

France reveals new recipe to tackle the nation's love of junk food

Photo: Despositphotos