Opinions were unanimous for once: the 2011 edition of the Salon of Agriculture, which closed its doors Sunday night, is a very good rose. The Show President, Jean-Luc Poulain, maybe a little disappointed that the bar of the 700,000 visitors have not been exceeded, said he was still satisfied. "We were concerned that the poster campaign equating so farmers free to polluters would do us harm," says the manager, himself a farmer in the Oise. Just for the day Saturday the threshold of 100,000 visitors was reached (105,000 to be exact). However, Sunday's was significantly worse, with an influx of about 50,000 people. Sunday the weather is generous without much doubt.
In fact the organizers had set a target of 650,000 people which is very largely exceeded."This is a good edition, despite the difficulties of the livestock sector in particular, indicates Beulin Xavier, chairman of the agricultural union majority, the National Federation of Farmers' Unions (FNSEA). This high attendance shows that consumers are aware that food quality has a cost. " Thus, the meat stand where an army of butchers were at work offered tastings of French livestock products did not empty. "I no longer buy my meat in supermarkets, but at my local butcher now, I prefer to eat less but better," says Anne-Laurence, who came from Nantes expressly for the occasion.
So why so popular? Three main reasons explain the popularity of this event. Firstly, the quality of the stands and open competition animals."In total, no fewer than 3,500 animals that are exposed in the aisles of the Porte de Versailles with the most varieties and breeds," says Guy Vasseur, President of Chambers of Agriculture. Do you know for example that France has the richest heritage equine world, "he says. A diversity that is evident both in sheep, pigs, poultry, but also cows with the star of the show 2011, the Vosges Candy spotted black and white and whose milk is renowned for Munster.
Visitors increasingly young and urban
Another reason for this success: the lure of a population becoming younger and also urban. "The stands have become over time such as dairy products, an area very educational and very fun-oriented kids, for its part, Marie-Pierre Vernhes, the inter-dairy.Like opening up a clientele of more "bobo" and urban areas. With culminating in the Friday night when the doors are open until 23 hours. "This year the event has reached a record with a 40% increase in visitor numbers to 112,000 people for the whole day," says Jean-Luc Poulain.
Finally, the busy exhibition of agriculture due to the "capital of sympathy urban citizens vis-à-vis farmers increasingly strong," says his side, the sociologist François Purseigle which explains it as " back to basics and fundamentals in times of crisis. "
Remains that the current problems such as rising agricultural raw materials, the producer price or the environment, such as photovoltaic, remain.Bracket a week has closed Sunday, but it helped initiate a dialogue between all components of the chain: producers, processors and distribution. They lived under the same roof for ten nights. To transform them to the test every link in the chain can experience the fruits of his labor.
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