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Soya in the Grand-Ouest: increasing protein autonomy in livestock farms and developing outlets for human food

26 Sep 2022

The soya consumed by French livestock farms comes mainly from exports or from the South-West. As demand is very high in the Grand-Ouest, producing local soya could help to increase protein autonomy in livestock farms. Moreover, the north-west of France is also very well endowed with agri-food companies, some of which have a strong demand for French soya. The LEGGO association (Légumineuses à graines du Grand Ouest) was also created with the aim of developing seed legumes (of which soya is a part) for human consumption.

The Prospective Aliment model, developed by Céréopa, makes it possible to estimate the needs for the Normandy, Pays de la Loire and Centre-Val de Loire regions with at least 120,000 tonnes of non-GMO soya cake, i.e. approximately 160,000 tonnes of seeds.

Nevertheless, the north-west of France remains a basin where the crop is struggling to develop. In 2022, soybean acreage is estimated at 8,700 ha (Brittany, Normandy, Pays de la Loire, Centre-Val de Loire and Poitou-Charentes) compared to 178,000 ha nationally.

With the support of Cap Protéines, Terres Inovia has carried out several actions in 2021 and 2022 to identify the development potential of soybean in the Centre-Ouest zone:

  • setting up observatories of farmers' plots in 2021 and 2022 with monitoring of plots in both conventional and organic farming to identify limiting factors and production potential in different production contexts
  • updating the technical and economic scenarios for the inclusion of soybean in crop rotation in Pays de la Loire, initiated within the framework of the PEI Santé du Végétal, taking into account the strong evolution of the economic situation in 2022
  • a survey of economic operators in the Centre and West regions, conducted jointly by Terres Inovia and Terres Univia, aimed at obtaining an overview of the soybean sector in the region and the prospects for the sector in the years to come
  • the organisation of a multi-stakeholder consultation meeting to discuss the challenges facing the soybean sector in the Centre-West zone and to specify the main lines of development.


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