Lionel Foubert, Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest:

"We want to supply French garlic all year round"

According to Lionel Foubert, of Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest, the French garlic market is promising. "There is a growing demand for products of French origin. Also, garlic consumption remains stable, since it is considered a healthy product, and that is a good quality to have in the current context marked by Covid-19." For Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest, the closure of the restaurant sector has resulted in a transfer of activity to the retail and large distribution.

Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest is part of a group of three companies specialized in garlic. They are based on the same site in Cadours, in Haute-Garonne. Together they handle the production, the marketing and transformation. "Our strategy is focused on French garlic; our objective is to be able to supply it all year round," says Lionel.

The production subsidiary is called Ferme de La Hitte, a monoculture garlic producer. It is the second growing season for the company, which has 45 hectares that yield an estimated 400 tons. The marketing is carried out by Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest, which buys garlic from its own company, as well as from other farms. The company was founded in 1982. Each year, it markets around 3,000 tons of garlic, mostly French, but also imported during the off-season period. Most of it is sold in France; exports only account for 5% of the turnover. The subsidiary Sokod’ail (1989) is specialized in the production of culinary products, such as garlic puree, garlic cloves, peeled garlic and dehydrated garlic.

Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest offers a wide range of garlic, including the PGI white garlic from Lomagne, pink garlic from Lautrec (with the Label Rouge certificate) and PDO-protected purple garlic from Cadours. It is also IFS certified and participates in the BeeFriendly and Zero Pesticide Residues (CRP) initiatives of the Nouveaux Champs collective.

The fields during the 2020 harvest of La Ferme de La Hitte

With the aim of modernizing and increasing the French garlic volumes, the company has made considerable investments over the last two years. The total investment reaches almost two million Euro. "We have invested 300,000 Euro in cultivation, 200,000 Euro in marketing and 1,500,000 in transformation. In 2021, we will continue to invest to increase our production and storage capacity. All this fits in with our vision of being garlic specialists and offering new solutions in cultivation, marketing and transformation," says Lionel.

For more information:
Lionel Foubert
Les Aulx du Sud-Ouest    

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