how the organic bread industry is holding up in Gard

how the organic bread industry is holding up in Gard
how the organic bread industry is holding up in Gard

In 2023, 5% of organic farming farms would return to conventional farming. Stakeholders in the bakery sector are mobilizing. Among the solutions put forward by the sector: consultation between producers and consumers, for better adaptation.

In his bakery in Vers-Pont-du-Gard, Dominique makes small praline shortbreads. Homemade pastries that are successful but for which he cannot afford to use organic flour: the price of the cake would be doubled. “They would be unsaleable!” according to the professional.

The organic and local flour he uses is reserved for his bread variations. Products that highlight his bakery, but which also require some sacrifices.

For organic bread, we increased the prices, but we have not seen a drop in customers, for bread at least. We are still making more and more volume of organic bread and that allows us to get by, but I have taken it upon myself to perpetuate the business. I simply lowered my salary and I did not replace my worker who left.” confides Dominique Quelo, bbaker-pastry chef.

To prevent artisans and organic farmers from being tempted to return to traditional production and abandon the label, the Raspaillou association establishes partnerships between them.

A way to guarantee outlets within 100 km and stable income.

Today, the Raspaillou sector, which is a local organic wheat and bread sector and which has existed for 15 years, allows farmers to maintain their income. This has also reinforced certain installations of new farmers who settle in the Gard. They are reassured by the presence of this sector and the possibility of integrating it, by having long-term visibility on the price at which they will sell their wheat. explain Juliette BellayRaspaillou association – Occitanie organic bread.

And the sector is progressing. “We started with 40 tonnes and we went up little by little. We have to create the market, we have to convert bakers so that they start making organic bread. Generally, we plan ahead. We produce what we sell”, detailed Jean Louis Poulon,organic farmer.

Today, this farmer manages to sell 500 tonnes of organic wheat per year, among others to the village bakery.

Other sectors are trying the same experiment to get out of the crisis. Market gardening for example or aromatic and medicinal plants.

Written with Pascale Barbès.

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