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Jocelyn Joncour

France: From blueberries to lamb lettuce

Jocelyn Joncour has left blueberry crops to grow lamb's lettuce in the Finistère department. His product is destined for SICA Saint Pol-de-Léon. "Together with my partner, I took over a 4.5-hectare farm, 3 of which covered, in Tréflaouénan. Lamb's lettuce is a very different crop from blueberries, with a very short vegetation cycle that demands a great deal of attention and is subject to particularly strict specifications. As growers, we must constantly strive for perfection to meet the required quality criteria."

A succession of vegetation cycles
The two partners grow lamb's lettuce throughout the year, but production is most intense in the summer months. "With the nice weather in Brittany, the vegetation cycle is at its optimum, for 32 to 35 days. We are currently seeing more active production, which means better, healthier quality. Cycles are following each other more quickly and are in line with a more dynamic demand in June, July, August and September, when lettuce consumption is generally higher. Overall, we have four different periods in our production year: the summer period, two relatively calm periods corresponding to March/April and October/November, and more moderate consumption between November and March. Our consumption peaks correspond to our production capacity."

Secure production
This spring was rainy, but most of our surface area is under cover, which means that the crops were protected from the risk of disease and pests. "That is the advantage of working with secure equipment. We also benefit from Brittany's temperate climate, with neither excessive heat nor extreme cold. Production is therefore balanced from one year to the next."

A significant difference between production purchase prices and consumer selling prices
Although many professionals in the fruit and vegetable sector are currently complaining about the lack of consumption, we sell our products to the SICA Saint-Pol-de-Léon so we can work with wholesalers who have national and European outlets. On the whole, the market is holding up, although the difference between the purchase price in production and the selling price to the consumer is, in my opinion, extremely significant. Prices can easily quadruple, which can sometimes curb consumption."

For more information:
Jocelyn Joncour
[email protected]

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