French consumers have responded to rising inflation by cutting their expenditure on food, buying own-brand products, less fresh produce and not eating out, a survey has revealed.

The survey, conducted by government-sponsored research institution CREDOC, found that as prices increase consumers shopping habits are increasingly informed by their shopping bills.

"French shoppers are still very attached to the traditional concept of 'pleasures of the table' but as food prices rise they are becoming more concerned about capping their spending," a spokesperson for CREDOC told just-food today (24 September).

In France, over the past year, the cost of fruit has increased by 17.6%, milk and cream has risen 14.8% and poultry has increased 12.5%.

The survey found 18% of respondents were buying fewer non-essential items, 28% were opting for lower-range products and 17% were consuming less.

"In 2008 and 2009, there could be a reduction in the volume of food spending," the survey concluded.