Chips are thin vegetable slices fried in oil until they become crunchy. Generally made of potatoes, chips can now be made from vegetables such as manioc, sweet potato and beetroot, or fruit such as apple, banana and durian.
The chip market has more than doubled in value since 2000, reaching 300 million EUR in 2012, and boasts growth of more than 4% per year. The French consume an average of 400 grams of chips per person per year, falling far behind Spain and the United Kingdom.
The chip market remains dominated by the world's food giants but leaves room for private labels and brands that emphasise the "Made in France" aspect. PepsiCo (Lay's) is the leader in the French chip market with a 40% market share and more than 137 million in sales.
The many repurchases are indicative of a sector in full concentration.
The evolution of innovation in recent years, such as changes in aromas and shapes, raises the risk of the main brands running out of steam. Premium chips are gradually conquering the market, like Tyrell's or San Carlo.