A competition is under way to find France’s most beautiful market.
Voters have until March 30 to choose their favourite market in any one of the 24 participating regions.
Regional winners will then compete against each other to find a nationwide champion.
French national broadcaster TF1 is running the contest in conjunction with a number of regional news outlets.
Last year’s competition saw over two million votes cast, with the Marché des Halles de Narbonne in Occitanie crowned the winner.
La photo souvenir des commerçants des Halles de #Narbonne élues plus beau marché de France pic.twitter.com/BWnZO0E86c— L'Indep Narbonne (@Narbonne_lindep) June 30, 2022
The current iteration of the competition sees an expanded format, allowing for more focus on regional winners to present their markets to others at a national level.
In previous years, the competition had regional votes followed by a national finale to crown the champion.
The format for the first round of regional voting remains unchanged, and you have until March 30 to vote for your local favourite.
You can click here to find the regional breakdown, then select your area and vote.
️ Près de 200 marchés en compétition pour la 6e saison de « #VotrePlusBeauMarché » dans le JT #LE13H de @TF1 @MSLacarrau— TF1Info (@TF1Info) March 9, 2023
jusqu'au jeudi 30 mars pour désigner le marché préféré de votre région !
C'est par ici ⤵️https://t.co/0zi6HrjWRa pic.twitter.com/1oTH7xlImK
This year, however, the nationwide vote will be divided into two stages.
The first part, held in April and May, will see the 24 markets whittled down to a top ten, and then the final stage will see these ten markets battle it out for the title, with the final winner being crowned on June 26.
There will also be the inclusion of a ‘super jury’ made up of TV presenters and chosen viewers to help pick the eventual winner.
The 24 national finalists will each be showcased on TF1’s afternoon news programme.
Read also: ‘France’s favourite village’: See 14 contenders for this year’s vote
Competition shines light on local ventures
The competition is a great way to promote local communities and celebrate the work they do, according to Maria-Sophie Lacarrau, who hosts the competition on her daily afternoon news programme at TF1.
“Markets are very important in the life of our regions. They are very authentic and friendly places. At the market, we talk to each other, we exchange, we get news,” she said, highlighting the communal aspect of France’s markets, which are particularly valued in rural areas.
“I think this event is a great way to promote our producers who don't count their hours. We feel their work, their love of the land and good products, their sense of sharing,” she added.
Last year’s winner, the Marché des Halles de Narbonne is a charming covered market that combines food and artisanal stalls. It has been open for over 100 years in the heart of the city centre.
Will you vote in the competition? Which is your favourite market? What influence has food price inflation had on whether you shop at markets or supermarkets? Let us know at email@example.com
French farmers in plea for help as sales of organic food fall