“Your tzatziki is a little bitter, you know. Do you want my bread? Do you taste my duck curry? ” Every noon, the reception room becomes the canteen for the farmers of La Guilbardière, where everyone cooks a dish. It is above all an agora where decisions are taken once a week, unanimously. “We have the right to say no but we must propose a solution instead”, warns Melaine Travert, one of the four thirty-something partners who took over this emblematic organic farm in early 2020.

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Located about fifteen kilometers from Blois, in Monthou-sur-Bièvre, La Guilb ‘, with its walls coated with lime, its 35 dairy cows and its 100 cultivated hectares, was among the pioneers of organic farming in the Loir-et -Dear. In 2020, the couple who exploited it retired. After having taken care to pass it on to four young people from all walks of life. “An heir of the Mulliez family first came to see us and that bothered us a bit, says Anne Martin. He was ready to buy our farm at a high price to be able to supply his Parisian organic stores by taking our two employees as crop managers. Our desire was rather to be able to transmit to young people who want to do this job, without strangling them. “

Her husband, Gilles Guellier, whose parents had acquired the Guilb’in 1957, moved in 1986, at the age of 30. It will take six years to convert all the productions to organic. “Realize that my father was a forerunner of intensive agriculture with the use of chemicals!” There were some clashes between us but financially, I was doing … He even ended up admiring me. “

“The memory of my grandfather”

“You could say that I am the most bourgeois on the farm”, is having fun today Bertrand Monier, one of the buyers, an agricultural engineer by training and a long-time agricultural worker to get his hands on. He is dedicated to the production of noodles with ancient wheats grown on site. Its surplus flour supplies an organic baker in Saint-Romain-sur-Cher. Bertrand could have joined the father’s business, specializing in made-to-measure shirts, with a workshop in Normandy and a boutique on rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honoré, in Paris, “But the memory of my grandfather, Auvergne breeder, was stronger”.

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Son of a telecoms engineer and a midwife, Melaine Travert followed his psychologist companion when she landed a job in a nearby clinic in Cour-Cheverny. The only partner to live on site, Melaine alternates breeding and farming alongside Mathieu Liaigre, who did not want to take over the family breeding in Deux-Sèvres. “If I had to succeed my father, it was to find myself with my uncle. Except that he and I have an opposite vision of the profession. “ Emily Destaerke-Fontaine, daughter of civil servants, takes care of the cheese factory. An intern, Lily, participates in the relaunch of the educational farm activity, severely battered by the pandemic: “During the school year, the farm could only accommodate 300 children when our predecessors received 2000”, for 10,000 euros of income per year.

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