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French bakers recapture world's longest baguette title

May 6, 2024

A crew of French bakers on Sunday dethroned Italy with a new world record by creating a 140-meter-long baguette. When finished, the national symbol was donated to feed the homeless.

French bakers stand near a large rotating oven in an attempt to beat the world record for the longest baguette
The baguette took 10 hours to makeImage: Stephanie Lecocq/REUTERS

An 18-member team of bakers in the French city of Suresnes, a western suburb of Paris, set a new Guinness World Record on Sunday by creating a 143.53-meter-long (461-foot-long) baguette.

The team bested the previous record by more than 10 meters, reclaiming the title for France after it had been held by bakers from Como, Italy, for the past five years.

A baker carries the Guinness World Records certificate after French bakers beat the record for the longest bagette
A Guinness World Records judge was on site to confirm the recordImage: Stephanie Lecocq/REUTERS

It was made during an event for the French Confederation of Bakers and Pastry Chefs.

Confederation President Dominique Anract said, "A record for the longest handcrafted baguette requires true spirit and collective sportsmanship," adding, "Bread is an engine of performance, our baguette is an essential part of our gastronomic heritage."

What goes into such an effort?

Guinness rules stipulate that the baguette — a symbol of Frenchness recognized the world over — must be at least 5 centimeters (just under 2 inches) thick throughout; in line with the standard baguette, which must be roughly 60 centimeters in length, weigh about 250 grams (roughly half a pound) and be made solely from wheat flour, water, salt and yeast.

Participating bakers said they began kneading dough for the 152 kilogram (335 pound) delicacy — which required 90 kilos of flour, 60 liters of water, 1.2 kilos of salt and 1.2 kilos of yeast — around 3 a.m.

It was then baked in a specially constructed, slow-moving wheeled tent oven.

A French baker stands near the baguette as it comes out of a large rotating oven in an attempt to beat the world record for the longest baguette
A traditional French baguette is about 60 centimeters longImage: Stephanie Lecocq/REUTERS

"Suresnes is proud to have been the scene of this record for the longest baguette in the world, which promotes a national symbol of our gastronomy as well as the artisans who perpetuate their know-how," said Mayor Guillaume Boudy.

"I congratulate the bakers from Suresnes who participated in the baking, and maintain the daily sharing tradition essential to the conviviality of our city."

After Guinness officials certified the effort, part of the baguette was cut and handed out interested onlookers, while the rest was distributed to the homeless.

js/lo (Reuters,DW sources)