A visit to arguably the world’s biggest food exhibition in Paris would not be complete without a visit to Rungis International Market, the world’s first and, today the largest, fresh product market. An excruciating wake-up call at 2:30am is guaranteed to be more than worthwhile by the sights, sounds, smells and sensations that greets the visitor (tours are conducted daily via pre-booking).
- The market gets into the full swing between 2-7am.
- Over 1 200 businesses ‘wheel and deal’ at Rungis every day.
- Rungis is 43 years old, having opened in 1969 originally in the centre of Paris. There, it occupied 12 hectares.
- The market moved to its current position, near Orly airport, in 1969 and now occupies over 234 hectares.
- Over 1 200 companies operate at Rungis daily, incorporating over 12 000 employees.
- The market is divided into six activities, including fish and seafood, meat (including poultry and offal), dairy and delicatessen, fruits and vegetables, flower, plants and decorations, and related businesses to the food industry (clothing, equipment, etc.).
- The collective turnover of the market tenant is almost €8 billion per annum (in 2011) at an approximate volume (in tonnes) of 1.4 million (these volumes concern the wholesale business of the market, not the volume coming through the warehouse).
- Last year, nearly seven million entries were registered.
- SMMARIS, the investment body, has invested almost €25million into the market.
- Last year, almost 4 000 new buyers registered to operate at Rungis. No wholesale market developer (worth his salt) would skip a visit to Rungis Market.
According to Marc Spielrein, chairman of SEMMARIS, the financial group has spent a lot of time and effort – particularly in the last year – ensuring that Rungis Market stays on the forefront. ‘Rungis Market represents a logistical and commercial hub that takes in nearly 2.5 million tonnes a year,’ he states. ‘This does not detract from the fundamental nature of the physical market; without that market, the other activities would not exist. However, the synergies are very strong and simultaneously functioning of these complementary activities increases the value added of the whole. This illustrates the originality of a model that is the envy of all wholesale markets.’