Since 2011, Fert assists farmers in the Samtskhe Javakheti region of Georgia to develop production and dairy farming. In 2014, from September the 28th to October the 5th, a delegation of 16 Georgians – composed of 8 breeders of GBDC technicians and representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture – went to meet the players in the dairy sector in the Massif Central.
Farmers and other stakeholders in the Georgian agriculture had to observe how milk is produced in France and how French farmers drive their farms and feed their animals. It was also to see how these farmers organize collectively to benefit from technical assistance to manage the health aspects, purchase equipment or process and sell their products.
During this stay, Georgian farmers have retained including:
- The meeting with the breeders of the Loire themselves process the milk into cheese or sell it to a small local family structure. The products are varied and cheese benefiting from a protected designation of origin (PDO), Fourme Montbrison.
- A tour of the dairy cooperative Jeune montagne, in Aveyron allowed them to discover the history of the cooperative and very good valuation of milk; breeders have noted on this occasion that it is possible to differentiate a product with a strong identity and enhance it. Over 40 years, members of the cooperative worked on the genetics, diet and transformation: a long-term workthat was worn over time by farmers.
- A meeting with young farmers, installed thanks to the aid which are reserved for them (subsidized loans Young Farmer) and even sometimes using the local cooperative.
- The presentation by the Director of the activities of the Chamber of Agriculture of the Aveyron; many ideas to project and hope that tomorrow institutions are built in Georgia that farmers express their views and play their role in the definition of agricultural policies.
The study tour ended with a visit to the Summit of Livestock Clermont-Ferrand, where the dairy animal performance and small dairy equipment did not fail to seduce the entire delegation.