Fromagerie La Bigotte
You can’t imagine all that cheese can do for you!
YOU LOVE CHEESE ? ME TOO ! And, even if you don’t like it, I’m sure you would love to see a better food system and a society evolving in a good way? Me Too! Together, we can act!
A dairy farm working with its own terroir can help change the current dairy system for the better. It can have a strong impact on the local economy, on the environment and jobs. Basically, it has an impact on our lives. “You can’t imagine all that cheese can do for you!” Unlike non-local consumption, “buying local is worth 400 per cent more” for your local area. (Nef, 2005).
To reach this goal, I’ve been preparing myself for around 7 years. So that I have the right skills, I’ve tried to ensure I have a good diversity of meeting specialists, training and learning in a wide range of subjects. To help with this, I studied a Bachelor Degree in Business and Entrepreneurship followed by a Masters Degree in Local and Terroir Products along with a Bachelor Degree in Cheese Making. Through my work and internship, I’ve become used to management and business administration and cheese production techniques within companies which are pioneering sustainable development.
Today, I want to go back to my roots and build a sustainable project to share my love for cheese and the special culture associated with it. Unfortunately I face a key obstacle: finance… The objectives of my campaign to bring about my sustainable vision are presented below. When like me, you desire to see our nice cow’s milk evolving on the way on local, tasty, sustainable products, don’t hesitate anymore and come with me on this journey towards sustainable and local development, with a good milky taste!
The project :
Since 150 years ago, our family bred its cows on the farm of La Bigottière. The family tries to preserve this small piece of land in order to let live here the next generation. These exchanges between humans and nature, have resulted in a unique terroir emerging. Here, we are in the Bocage Mayennais, a landscape with small hill mixed with hedges and bosque environment. This cheese dairy unit wants to be an anchor in this area, for this tradition and interaction with the environment.
This picture shows a part of this terroir. This natural diversity, the Normand cow herd, everything working together, which results in a high quality cheese with the taste of a special terroir.
Concerning products, different things happened to me as evidence. Like the Mont St Michel, the district Mayenne is squeezed between Normandy and Brittany. In Larchamp, the town of the farm, we have the ambition to get the better of these two areas for our cheese. The Normand cows and the camembert tradition push us to try the adventure of a camembert from the Bocage Mayennais. A terroir cheese made with raw milk and proud of its origins. By the way, if you’d like to learn more about terroir, don’t hesitate to call me, I love to talk about it!
With your help, it is possible to make more than just a camembert: yogurt, fromage blanc, milk and semi-pressed cheese could also be possible. With the right support, it could be possible to realise an even bigger number of foods!
A citizen and sustainable project :
Terroir is nice, however, for those who don’t have an interest in it, why should you care? Well, as I said at the start, you can’t imagine all that cheese can do for you! Basically, between all the economic, environmental and social aspects, a farm cheese unit is nearly its own isolated political, citizen and sustainable program. And because, there is a lot to say, here are some outlines.
A cheese made in a farm, is a product which is going to evolve season after season thank to the food the cows eat. “Want to finish with eating too much standardized food, try a cheese made directly on a farm”.
From an environmental perspective, being able to consume locally ensures that your food didn’t travel 10 000 km before being on your plate. On the farm, we are working on a grazing system so that, at least, we want to be able to produce a tasty, affordable and organic food.
Want to be a consum’actor, nothing better than local consumption. For instance, in England, News Economics Foundation and the Northumberland County Council tried to quantify the impact of local consumption. £1 spent brought to the area £1,76 if the product is local and only £0.36 if it is not (Nef, 2005). The diagram below, explains nearly the same result in the USA: “Local is phenomenal” (Civics Economics, 2008). Want to know more and to share about the project and this study, don’t hesitate: links are above and below.
After being aware of these mechanisms, because I am strongly linked to my roots and because I am also a cheese addict, I thought that I could start a cheese production in order to be part of the local and national economy.
Every coin, you spend locally impact lives of people around you. This system improves jobs for the people around us, friends, neighbors, families. I don’t know about you, but, in my relations, there are not a lot of millionaires. Because of that, when I spend money in the local economy, risks of fiscals evasions in Panama are reduced!!!
The other interesting points of local shopping are exchange between producers and consumer. Producers could find some more motivations to provide the best products he can. He knows customers; he will therefore want them to be happy with the food he bought in the farm. Consumers can ask every, and any, question they want and he is effectively the controller of the quality food he or she wants and also learn more about their food.
What are the funds for?
Setting up this kind of project needs money. The funds are going to be used to finance materials, inside construction and the structural works of the business. First estimations were made to be able to transform the milk of 3 cows which, here is about 25 000 liters of milk. With that quantity of milk, it is possible to make thirty-five camemberts per day.
In order to satisfy a bigger number of people, the idea was to make camembert, a semi-pressed cheese, yogurts, milk and fromage blanc. Crowdfunding, can help to develop this different kind of product. In fact, for every new product we would like to do, we need some more material and investments grow. Your support could help to start a real alternative of local and farming food. Goals below present the possible development
Our fundraising goals together with what the money will be spent on:
Basically, for every 100 € support, 40 € will be used for the website commission, compensation and its VAT. The remaining 60€ will serve to finance the project, so do not hesitate. Regarding the cost estimates, the project as a whole will need around 100 000 €.
About the project owner
My parents told me that, when I was a kid, I said to them I would like to set up a company – for reasons I couldn’t really explain. Then, I also understood, the importance of working on sustainable development. There is a sentence which says “To succeed in your life, is to try to make the world better after you than before you”. For those born in the 90’s, you have heard since your earliest memories that we are in “crisis”. All of that has probably pushed me to try to do something in order to get out of that “crisis”.
After studying higher levels, I went to study Business Administration at the University of La Rochelle. This city and the school are quite a pioneer in sustainable development. During this bachelor in Business and Entrepreneurship, I had an experienced in every pillar of the sustainable development: one ecological SME, one social NGO Oxfam, and one web start up: eDarling.
My education, values and history push me to set up a food project in a sustainable way. Environment and food scandals are currently an increasing area of focus in our society. La Bigotte want to be part of the construction of a new food model.
In order to build a working model, I thought it was necessary to understand what it was all about. I spent two years with the Food Identity program. A degree organized by several universities in Europe such as ESA in Angers or Harper Adams in UK. With my relatives from all around the world, we have discovered tools to make a land durable. AOC or PDO are some good ones. Food Identity Association page can help you to learn more about that. During these two years, I fall in love with cheese, its fine detail and its magic. I did my internship to one “Meilleur ouvrier de France” à Roanne, Mr Hervé Mons. He and his team are already supporting traditional and local production such as Salers Traditions in Auvergne.
Conserving the aim to be a cheese producer, I finished my studies by learning how to make cheese. I went to the east of France and the region of the cheese Comté in Franche Comté. I worked for big producers of organic dairy products: the family Gaborit with its jersey cattle.
Since September, I have tried to make this project real. Now, it is time to find funds. The idea was to finance the factory thanks to citizen-funding. That’s to make the project more coherent: a cheese project; for people; made by people. The ambition is to have a strong positive impact on society and for that the sooner the better. Now do you realise all that cheese can do for you?
Thank you :
Many thanks to Fabienne Fouqué, without her, this page wouldn’t have been as nice as it is. She did an amazing job on graphics.
Many thanks to Murielle for her many advices, and also to my parents : we are all in the boat now !
Many thank for those, you give me a feedback to build this page and make it better day after day such as : Amandine, Eva, Flora, Jennifer, Linda, Lise, Maéva, Marine, Mathieu, Maxime, Phil, Philippe, Stéphanie.
Many thanks also for those, I didn’t ask but I am sure they would have been pleased to help. You can still keep going ! Thanks
Local first, 2008,septembre LOCAL WORKS!, [en ligne] http://bealocalist.org/sites/default/files/file/GR%20Local%20Works%20Summary.pdf [consulté le 12/05/2016]
Nef, 2005, 7 mars, Buying local worth 400 per cent, [en ligne] http://www.neweconomics.org/press/entry/buying-local-worth-400-per-cent-more [consulté le 12/05/2016]