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Le Pressoir d'Or, a medal-winning orchard in sustainable agriculture

Approved in October 2020, shortly after the hedgerow method, the Orchard Planting method is one of the main methodologies of the French Low Carbon Label. Set up by the Compagnie des amandes and Agrosolutions, it certifies the reductions in emissions achieved by orchard planting projects on one or more agricultural plots. This method is currently being updated by Agrosolutions and a second one dedicated to existing orchards will soon be available.

Although different from forestry or agricultural projects, this method is nonetheless essential to the pursuit of net carbon neutrality. It ensures that carbon is stored for a maximum of 20 years, but also enhances an activity that is often difficult from an economic point of view. Indeed, setting up a fruit farm is a project that requires a heavy financial investment and whose income often comes late. Through the certification of these carbon sinks, farmers obtain additional support for the establishment of their activity and the application of sustainable agricultural practices.

Having started its journey in the voluntary offset market almost a year and a half ago, Carbonapp has helped create numerous orchard planting projects throughout France. Whether individual or collective, certified or in the process of being approved, all these farms are proof of an agricultural expertise based on respect for the environment and the long-term capture of greenhouse gas emissions. We are pleased to count the Pressoir d'Or farm among them.

Founded in 1987 by Mr. Éric Doré in Frenelles-en-Vexin in the Eure department, this farm was oriented from the beginning towards the planting of apple trees, a precursor activity on this family estate, in place of a property dedicated to livestock. Today, the Pressoir d'Or is a 330-hectare farm with approximately 26,000 trees and 15 varieties of cider apples, such as Peau de chien, Judaine, douce moen, etc. A family business that has been recognised on numerous occasions for the quality of its products.

As early as 1993, after participating in the Agricultural Competition in Paris, the Pressoir d'Or was awarded a gold medal, making its skills official for the first time. Nearly 20 years later, the estate has won more than 25 medals. Joined in 2015 by his daughter Margaux, Éric Doré has been able to develop his range of products and continues to win over his customers.

But the strength of this company is not limited to its sales, it is also reflected in its production techniques. With processing and bottling done on site, the farm favours a short circuit and a low carbon footprint in addition to local production limiting imports from abroad. Eric Doré likes to describe himself as a producer, harvester and processor: "We go from the planting of the apple tree to the tasting and oenology of the product and its aromas.”

The farm works with a system of integrated pest management, which relies heavily on nature to function and develop. Concerned with promoting biodiversity in the orchard and limiting the use of chemicals, various actions have also been taken to control the proliferation of pests. Insects such as the typhlodrome, a predator of the red spider mite, and the ladybird for aphids, have been introduced in the orchards. Pheromone traps have been placed against codling moths, whose larvae cause great damage to apple trees. Finally, wild bees and about thirty hives of domesticated bees were placed to promote the pollination of flowers and the harvesting of honey.

This commitment to biodiversity, combined with more responsible farming techniques, enabled the Pressoir d'Or to receive the Organic Agriculture certification in 2020. This certification is now combined with the Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) and the ISO 9001 standard based on quality management.

Today, Mr Eric Doré and his daughter's project is to expand the farm by planting new apple trees on an area of 4.33 hectares through the conversion of former agricultural land. This will not only increase their cider production, but also the carbon storage allowed by the orchard by 225.7 tonnes of CO2 equivalent. Certified by the Ministry, this project has recently been funded by Adecco.

Article written by Axelle Rimpot


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