The market gardening cooperative, Solarenn (Saint-Armel, €42.9M turnover 2016, +10%), has invested €1.3M since 2016 in reorganising, modernising and automating its packing lines, with a goal of €50M turnover in 2020. Every year, Solarenn packs 26,800 tonnes of tomatoes from 32 farms and has increased its production areas by 10% every year to reach 67 hectares planted under glass in 2017.
With increasing competition from foreign productions on French soil, mainly Dutch producers, the cooperative stands out by promoting its 70 different varieties, with the round tomato now only accounting for 5% of products. New products like three colours of mini peppers have been introduced and Gariguette strawberries are increasing their market share.
Solarenn is involved in energy transition: 60% of its glasshouses are fitted with cogeneration, two other methanisation units are at the project stage and an innovative project for recuperating unavoidable energy from incineration should be finalised in 2018. Note that the cooperative is involved in co-financing the new glasshouse at the Caté vegetable-packing station (Saint-Pol-de-Léon) with Savéol (Plougastel-Daoulas) and Prince de Bretagne (Saint-Pol-de-Léon).
Source : Journal des Entreprises – 03/04/2017
Photo credit : Solarenn