France is a world leader in terms of foodstuff and livestock exports which has transformed agriculture in one of the most important contributors to the economy. The government created various support programs for investors interested in setting up farms or cooperatives in order to cultivate vegetables or fruit, but also for those interested in setting companies in order to grow cattle for export. Agriculture is one of the main engines of the French economy, registering annual sales of close to 200 billion euros and employing a large number of the country’s workforce. All French regions welcome investors interested in setting up agricultural businesses, as they all have land plots dedicated to various cultures, but also research centers where new species can be developed.
Foreign investors interested in starting a business in the agriculture industry in France must register a company in this country and respect the norms imposed by the governmental agencies in order to sell their products.
You can also benefit from the support of our company formation consultants in France if you need information on the laws you must abide by when setting up an agricultural business here.
The first step to set up a company in the French agriculture industry is to select a type of structure, prepare the documents related to its incorporation and file them with the Trade Register. Our company registration agents in France can assist with this process.
Considering most of the products are destined for export, all companies operating in the agriculture industry in France must comply with certain requirements. Among these are:
Once these requirements are complied with, the company must apply for certain licenses.
In order to import or export products in, respectively outside France, an agricultural company must obtain a VAT number and apply for an import/export license. Special permits are required for certain products. Considering France is one of the largest markets in Europe for organic agricultural products, these types of goods are subject to special requirements. In this case, it is also recommended to register the name of product with Intellectual Property Office in France.
Not only is the French agricultural industry important for the European countries, but France is the fourth largest exporter of foodstuff in the world. In 2015, French companies exported products worth a total of 44.3 billion euros. French companies are leaders in the export of beef, potatoes, poultry, cereals and dairy products.
These good results are the outcome of laws focusing on the protection of the environment, governmental assistance granted to companies, especially SMEs, and most of all to the 12 innovation clusters dedicated to research and development in the agricultural sector.
It could be said that agriculture is the largest industry in France, considering the record level of sales which almost never goes down. Agricultural companies bring in close to 200 billion euros to the economy every year. They also employ more than 440,000 individuals of the total workforce registered in the country.
During the last several years, an increasing number of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) activating in the agri-food industry was registered in France. In 2015, there were 16,218 SMEs operating in this industry.
In Europe, France occupies one of the leading positions in terms of agricultural power, supplying 18.1% of the products reaching the EU market. France surpasses Germany, Italy and Spain when it comes to the agricultural products delivered in the Community.
For full information on opening a business in the agricultural industry in France, please contact us. We can also assist with the company registration procedure in France.