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Aeon eyes frozen food production for France’s Picard

JIJI

Major retailer Aeon Co. might make products for French frozen food retailer Picard Surgeles SAS in Japan, according to sources close to the matter.

Aeon is planning to hold talks with Picard about the possibility of producing its frozen food items in Japan, because imports alone may not be able to provide sufficient volume and range, the sources said.

The Japanese retailer also hopes to reduce the cost of low-temperature ocean transport by starting production in Japan together with other domestic makers, the sources said.

Picard operates about 1,000 stores in four European countries. Its products are popular, especially in France, for use in home parties.

Since Aeon President Motoya Okada believes that there is potential for high demand for French cuisine in Japan, the company approached Picard and started trial sales of its frozen food items in the Tokyo metropolitan area in November.

Aeon currently handles about 50 items, including croissants, sauteed duck and sliced foie gras. The prices range from ¥500 to ¥2,200.