Agricultural supply

 

Map showing the branch's sphere of influence

The Maïsadour Cooperative Group provides advice and seeds sales, plant-health products and fertilisers to farmers. The Group also markets agricultural machinery for grain, vineyards and specialised productions.

Giving agricultural advice and distributing agricultural supplies were one of Maïsadour's first core business areas. This business area operates in the Maïsadour cooperative as well as its subsidiary Agralia as a supplier of inputs in significant regional sectors: Grain, Seeds, Vine and wine, as well as Field vegetables and sweet corn. It involves all farmers working with various Group entities and represents a turnover of €115 million.

The activity's objectives are:

Several partnerships have been forged to maximise skills around this project.

 

An agriculture that combines economic performance with a better control of environmental impacts

The dual economic and environmental objective lead us to look for research in innovative agricultural practices with the aim to improve agricultural systems by copying natural processes.

Reducing production costs, the use of inputs and consequently the environmental impact of agricultural practices requires solid guidelines as a base to be able to give relevant advice on changes in agricultural practices.

Central to our approach are six 'Agrosites', each of which is around 4 ha in size, where multi-annual experiments are carried out over 5 to 7 years. These sites represent our five major production zones. The chosen areas of focus are water, soil fertility and biodiversity. These are studied through three technical levers: simplified soil work, innovative growing systems and alternative herbicide strategies.

Carte des agro-sites  Map of ‘Agrosites’

In order to reflect the reality of how crops are grown on farms, all work is carried out by farmers using their own equipment.

The sites also hold events and visits for farmers, as well as training them and advisors through annual meetings, during which observations and results are presented.
The Maïsadour Cooperative Group's farming advisors base their recommendations largely on nationally-recognised decision making tools (DMT). These DMTs complement the advisors' know-how on the ground and guide farmers as they look to optimise production, whilst respecting good practices. This contributes to minimising the environmental impact of production.

The tools mainly used Phytnès for crop protection products and Epiclès for fertilisation developped by the INVIVO Union, and the IRRE-LIS irrigation water management DMT by Arvalis-Institut du Végétal.

INOVITIS was purchased in 2013 by the Maïsadour Cooperative Group and is a specialist in formally-accredited experiments that follow good environmental practices. These experiments deal with the implementation of "vineyard" speciality trials, concepts in wine-making and technological monitoring. Located in Néac in the Bordeaux wine region, INOVITIS also distributes PESSL weather stations for the Bordeaux region.

 

 

Creating value for farmers

The responsible approach to sustainable production, an approach that the Maïsadour Cooperative Group follows, combines tailored support with the supply of products to farmers, as part of a certified advisory and service offering.  This support includes technico-economic moni

toring of crops as well as an array of services ranging from a customised environmental assessment to recommending solutions that are suitable for the plot and crop specifications. 

For the benefit of all those involved in these sectors, we are centring our focus on viticulture and grain quality policies as well as on specifications for specialist productions such as sweet corn and field vegetables. Choosing which products to use, controlling doses and giving relevant advice to farmers are fundamental elements of crop quality.

Since 2006, Maïsadour has been a signatory to the Cooperative Advice Charter, which comprises 10 fundamental commitments concerning the advice given and the associated progress approach.

Lastly, in order to help sustain the region's farms, the Maïsadour Cooperative Group supports and helps young farmers who are setting up their businesses, as part of the Maïsadour Young Farmers Charter.

 

Partnerships to maximise skills and resources

Logo AXSO

Inputs for plant-based productions are purchased via central purchasing facilities set up with other partner Cooperative Groups that have the same performance aims:

In terms of securing agricultural revenue, the Maïsadour Cooperative Group wanted to encourage farmers that place their trust in the Group to adopt a more structured risk control policy. The occurrence of several risks simultaneously can irreversibly damage a farm or vineyard. In terms of the risks associated with volatility, storms can also disrupt the markets. The Maïsadour Cooperative Group is committed to farmers and wine growers in order to support and help them find solutions to reduce the vulnerability of their farms.

In terms of the environment, Maïsadour is in partnership with French Chambers of Agriculture to apply guidelines concerning the handling of vulnerable zones and zones to be protected.

The Group is also a member of the FARRE 40 association (a forum for sensible and environmentally-friendly agriculture), ADAAQ (Association for the development of beekeeping in Aquitaine) and the Biodiversity Network for Bees.

 

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