Latest from EU Member States

France | Growing Vegetables, Seeding Values – Part 1

Vincent, Julie and their three employees run a small market garden in North-West France. Producing 45 vegetables, the team at La Ferme de Pitoué has learnt over the years the limits of diversification. In their garden, over coffee in the sunshine and a chorus of birdsong, Vincent tells us how they manage to stay true to their values on the farm. Part 1 of a conversation with Valérie Geslin. […]

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France | Farming by Numbers part 2

Work less, age better. Instead of more money, choosing to bring in more farmers. For Stéphane and his associates on their six-hectare horticulture farm, GAEC Le Jardin des Pierres Bleues, every choice is calculated to yield the best outcomes for people and planet. Part 2 of a conversation with Valérie Geslin. […]

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France | Farming by Numbers part 1

Stéphane loves numbers, and it’s a formula for the success of the six-hectare horticulture farm, GAEC Le Jardin des Pierres Bleues, that he runs together with three associates and one employee in Vay, north-west France. By his calculation, everyone gets to earn a dignified living, true to their principles and to nature. Free of debt, and free of CAP subsidies… In conversation with Valérie Geslin. […]

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France | Cooking Up Fairer Food & Farming Part 2

The Sustainable Food Consortium is a collective of local people working to make the food transition a reality in the territory of Redon, Brittany. It began as an attempt to recreate the atmosphere of a popular farming festival. One of its co-founders, slow food cook Xavier Hamon, tells us about the journey so far, and shares his latest fair local food project – an on-farm restaurant. Part 2 of a conversation with Valérie Geslin. […]

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France | Cooking Up Fairer Food & Farming Part 1

For Xavier Hamon, the term ‘chef’ is problematic. It fosters an unfair power dynamic between the person who produces the food and the person who cooks the food. Yet farmers and cooks are often up against the same challenges. Xavier is a founding member of the Slow Food Cooks Alliance, a partner of Nos Campagnes en Résilience. He favours a cooperative rather than a competitive approach to food – to the benefit of all involved. In conversation with Valérie Geslin. […]

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Green Deal-ing – Mid February EU News Round

With the French Presidency of the EU, some specific areas have come to the fore for farming, food and rural Europe. Under a broad-if-wooly EU Green Deal framework, carbon farming, pesticides, geographical indications, and reciprocal standards (mirror clauses) for third countries have received added impetus in this six month presidency. Ashley Parsons takes us though some of these, and some other hot topics, in this mid month round up for us. […]

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France | Change Is In Our Hands – Part 2

Far from the stereotype of the solitary farmer, Marion and Benjamin make a conscious effort to get farming out of its bubble. It’s the only way they’ll shift mentalities, they believe. The two farmers, who are associates in a cooperative mixed farm in Brittany, also open up on the thorny issues of unpaid activism, taking holidays as a farmer, and feeding the community versus feeding the world. Part 2 of an interview with Valérie Geslin. […]

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France | Change Is In Our Hands – Part 1

Marion and Benjamin are pig and dairy farmers on a community funded farm in Brittany, France. Agricultural engineers by training, they have reverse engineered the process of farming to make sure they get to take time off and make a decent living. In part 1 of a fascinating conversation, Valérie Geslin, project coordinator for Nos Campagnes en Résilience, unpacks their experiments in rural resilience. […]

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We’re Hiring! Call for Paris Correspondent for 2022

The European think tank ARC2020 seeks a freelance Paris Correspondent to cover agricultural, rural and regional policies and discussions in France, at government, regional and CSO level, especially during the French EU presidency. The correspondent will deliver content on socio-ecological transition in agri-food and rural domains, via tools such as  news and feature articles, audio visual elements, events and reports. The correspondent will be based in France but will work as part of an international team based around Europe. […]

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France | Rural Resilience – All In Good Time

What happens when a farm invites the wider community to collectively tease out its future? In September ARC2020 visited Brittany to find out. Seed savers, farm workers and chefs sat down with elected officials and representatives of regional organisations to share insights and listen to each other’s experiences. Louise Kelleher reports. […]

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France | Collective Farming, Community and Connection

What does a socio-ecological transition mean for farmers? Farmers from the Nos Campagnes En Résilience project share their thoughts on social issues in farming, the role of farms in the community, and how Nos Campagnes En Résilience can help to build rural resilience in France. […]

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France | Tasting Independence in Beaufortain

In this excerpt from the book “Rural Europe on the Move: A travel guide to transitions”, Philippe Barret tells the story of Beaufortain, a community in the French Alps that has been coming together to practice rural sustainability since the 17th century. Beaufortain also happens to be the home of ARC2020’s project to build rural resilience in France – “Nos campagnes en résilience”. In this chapter you’ll meet some of the key people involved in this latest venture: coordinator Valérie Geslin, volunteer Jeanine Sochas, and farmer Pierre Gachet.  […]

Nos campagnes en résilience

Paroles de paysans | Marie et Gilles AVOCAT

Qu’est-ce que le social dans l’agriculture ? Que peut apporter « Nos campagnes en résilience » aux paysans ? Marie et Gilles AVOCAT élevaient des brebis et produisaient du fromage au sein d’un GAEC. Autour d’un café dans une ambiance familiale et conviviale, ils nous livrent, avec passion, leur vision sociale de l’agriculture. […]

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France | Building Rural Resilience From The Ground Up

ARC2020 is launching a new project in France to build rural resilience from the ground up. It’s called “Nos Campagnes En Résilience”. The goal is to empower rural communities to realise their own fair and socio-ecological transitions, by connecting and supporting the many exciting initiatives that are emerging on the ground. Why France? And why now? Hannes Lorenzen explains. […]