Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

Les membres d’EELV ont exposé leurs arguments devant les hommes de la terre. Midi Libre – Michael Esdourrubailh

Everything seemed to oppose them. Winegrowers and environmentalists, however, found points of agreement this Thursday, March 7, in the premises of Midi Libre Béziers, during a one-hour debate. Discussions which resulted in the desire to come together more to build a future around the land and local terroir. Selected pieces.

Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

Farmers and ecologists: the face-to-face meeting organized by Midi Libre Béziers

1.« Ecology is killing winegrowers ? »

This expression had been used publicly by Martial Bories, the president of the L’Occitane cellar, in Servian. He clarifies his thoughts : "It's been 20 years since we started sustainable viticulture. What bothers me is that every year, there is a pile-up of measures and constraints, without any reason to exist. And that is destroying our viticulture. What I'm asking for: it's specifications, a carbon footprint and a residual analysis, so the consumer can rest easy." On the ;rsquo;use of glyphosate, Biterrois Jean-Pascal Pelagatti (FDSEA):"There are studies that say it is carcinogenic, others say it is not. Everyone looks at the study they like." "We have already made a huge amount of effort. No ban, no solution."

60% of birds have disappeared in 30 years

Yann Geshors (EELV), for his part, is far from sharing this position: "In countries where glyphosate is used, various studies assure that it’ is carcinogenic. We must reduce phytosanitary products in agricultural areas where 60% of field birds have disappeared in 30 years. Surveys will be carried out on birds in order to know exactly which products are concerned."

Thierry Antoine (EELV) continues: "We are not calling for a ban on the use of phytosanitary products. This is not possible. The question is not to move from agriculture dependent on chemistry to nothing at all. What is needed is a course to follow, trying to find medium and long term solutions and that we take science into account.& ;quot;

2. About the aid triggered

"It’is good to have suspended the Ecophyto plan but what we were offered is to the smoke because the machine is started and it will continue, estimates Martial Bories. "Terra Vitis (a certification) must be crossed out. Take stock of the most effective and least harmful products and let's start from there. "It’s up to us, together, to find solutions. But we must not be opposed.

For Jean-Pascal Pelagatti : "The measures are going in the right direction. The lyrics are lovely, but change will take time. We must follow, we ask for a work schedule, with close of review".


For Thierry Antoine, « These are very short-term measures, measuring sticks. We live on the same territory, we must build together. We ask for two things: that the proposed solutions are based on scientific studies, not publicity stunts, that it is based on reality. Then that the possible projects do not sustain life for four to five years , a model that no longer works. »

On the problem of access to water

A project to create winter water reservoirs (in Florensac, Coulobres and Magalas) is being carried out by the Department. “It’is a very good thing", believes Jean-Pascal Pelagatti. An anti-salt dam project on the Orb is defended by the wine growers of the lower Orb plain, to fight against the salinity of the land. "C& “It’s very complicated, it’s one of the solutions but legally it’s prohibited,” underlines the Béziers winemaker. "We must continue to work on this, while waiting for the law to change. But we may also need to work on relocation, diversification…"

According to Thierry Antoine, on the other hand, building such a dam "is not the solution if we refer to the studies of INRA and Sup agro. The lands were salty and they will be salty. What would drive me crazy is if we invested millions and the salt went elsewhere. The flow rate of the Orb is not sufficient. Building a dam against the sea is a DIY solution. We must agree to change the agricultural model, with relocation, changes in production."


"He was getting glyphosate"

Martial Bories : "This Malinois, he constantly followed me in the ranks. All day long, he was soaking up glyphosate. He died at 17! So when someone explains to me that glyphosate is a poison, and when I see the municipal employees who pass in pairs with their gas bottles to kill the grass, explain to me what is pollutes the most ?"

"A vine without phyto ?"

Jean-Pascal Pelagatti : "A vine without phyto is not possible, there are necessarily treatments. Even in organic farming, there are treatments for sulfur, copper, certain nettle purees. Afterwards what is most dangerous for the environment ? A small dose of phytosanitary or heavy metals ?"

"An outfit, a mask, glasses: that means there is a risk"

Yann Geshors :"At the agricultural high school where I studied, they explained to us that we had to wear an outfit, a mask and glasses to apply these products, that's because there is a risk !"

"We're walking on our heads"

Thierry Antoine : "We are walking on our heads: during the last Agglo council, it was voted to build a water treatment station, for Montblanc, because the two sources that will be used are above standards in terms of pesticide levels. This is an alert for everyone."

"Growing cannabis"

Thierry Antoine on the subject of the possibilities offered by the diversification of crops, with regard to climatic hazards: "Beyond hemp, we could also ask the question of the legalization of cannabis. Which would be a real opening for farmers."

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