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Louis-Marie Asselin, Desmettre Bio:

"The whole chain has to play the game"

Last Sunday, the world's largest fresh produce market was in the spotlight in the French TV program Zone Interdite, broadcast on M6: 'Rungis Market, at the heart of the food revolution'. Among the professionals interviewed was Louis-Marie Asselin, head of Desmettre Bio, who is struggling to market his range of downgraded fruits and vegetables. While ugly fruit and vegetables have been in vogue for some years now, the managing director points out that "we are not specialists in this sector, unlike some others, but we want to promote the produce of the growers we work with". Desmettre Bio has developed a dedicated range with this in mind. 'Mochébio' was launched at the Rungis MIN in April, with the dual aim of making organic food accessible to all while reducing food waste. What are the results one year on?

Nearly 20% of fruit and vegetables downgraded
As Louis-Marie Asselin explained last year, "Nearly 20% of our growers' fruit and vegetables are downgraded because they are less attractive visually or because their size doesn't fit the standards". Most of the produce is then sold to processing companies "where their added value is limited". The Mochébio range allows fruit and vegetables to stay in the fresh produce circuit. They are then sold at a lower cost, which enables producers to get a better return on their investment.

"We need a common will"
Normally, consumers buy with their eyes, but inflation has made price the number one criterion. "Today, many consumers are already aware of the importance of reducing food waste, but there's still a long way to go. We need to make them understand that beauty does not make the difference in terms of taste". The same goes for professionals. While more and more anti-waste initiatives are springing up, some customers remain difficult to convince. "There needs to be a willingness, from the producer right through to the seller, to agree to sell at an attractive price. As a wholesaler, we buy at a low price, so we have to sell at a low price. The whole chain has to play the game."

For further information:
Desmettre Bio
Louis-Marie Asselin
Managing Director
20 Rue de Carpentras - Bât D3,
94150 Rungis
[email protected]

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