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Re: The blocade season has started

Linda wrote "Farmers barely make a living anyway." My opinion too, from the experience of living in the Gers.
I just knew you would have to come back on that Wooly. So the farmers are rich where you live?
And as for "the blockade season has started" -
Before we left France, ?Jan. 2018, the Gers farmers were blockading the main routes to protest against their inclusion in the Pyreneen zone in which it's impossible to grow cereals (exempt from subsidies.)
I don't know if they won or not.

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Re: The blocade season has started

Most of the poor, subsistence farmers of which there were many round here seem to have gone, replaced by spuds, carrots, sugar beet and gites in very big fields.
Oh, and strawberries which are a big crop round here.

Example of enterprise: most spuds grown here go to Belgium for processong into chips, but one local farmer has set up his own chipping operation and supplies local markets like Le Touquet. He has also restored a great maison de maitre as a gite, with some grant help, top of the range into which he will retire in a good few years time.
But it took two generations to get to this point. His son will succeed him. It was started by grandfather who came from real poverty farming in Flanders, after the 2WW, got a bit of of land, built the farm, more land as it became available, now carried on by his son.
Ticking over, just about.
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Re: The blocade season has started

Perhaps the farmers down south are slower to catch on to modern developments.
During our 16 years there I did notice that as the older generation retire or die the sons and daughters either escape to the cities, or try to catch up with the new demands of farming.

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Re: The blocade season has started

Our farming neighbours farm about 250 hectares. The parents, who inherited from Grandad (who has died since we moved in..,no connection!) farmed with their son and one labourer. Then dad "retired" as in, he took his pension but was still working hard on the farm. A few years after his 60th birthday, two years ago, he dropped dead of a massive heart attack whilst dancing with his wife at the village fete. Within a few months, the labourer left. Now their son and his wife have sole responsibility for the farm, helped by their own 19-year-old son, during his holidays from agricultural college. They farm a variety of crops and have beef cattle. I don't think they have a particularly easy time, nor that they're especially well off. I wouldn't want their life.
Don't want to end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.
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Re: The blocade season has started

That pretty much describes most farmers round here Betty. The land is not suitable for large scale operations, with the exception of some vingnobles. We have noticed that in recent years the smaller grape growers have sold out to a couple of large producers, but there are still several who grow their own grapes, produce their own wine and sell locally. Some sell it direct to the local cooperative. The rest are mixed beef/dairy (very few of them left) and crop farmers. They work all the hours under the sun and never take a holiday.
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Re: The blocade season has started

Oh, come on.

Bettys neighbour has over 600 acres probably worth greater than 1 million euros just for the land alone. Not a bad inheritance, especially when a good business with all its breaks are thrown in. 600 acres isn't small.

OK some young are perhaps cutting and running but land does tend to stay in the family for many generations - and there is a very good reason for that.

NB based on 1 hectare equals 4,000 euros (varied between 3 and 17 thousand euros in france in 2016)

My name is Richard , not Dick or any variant.
Dick is a crude name for a functional organ that is used as a derogatory name. Any reference to me as Dick will be met with equivalent response. Strange that it cant be policed better.
ex Consultant NHS


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Re: The blocade season has started

Many farmers do not own more than a small part of what they farm, the rest being owned by absentee owners of all kinds.
When land does come up for sale it is snapped up though not necessarily by the people farming it. Good quality land sells for a premium which may well put it out of range of the actual farmer.
That being said, there was a big consolidation in the Vendée with wealthy farmers grabbing every hectare that they could.

Richard, are you criticizing the young for quitting that awful drudgery and imprisonment of farming? Personally, I applaud them.
Ticking over, just about.
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Re: The blocade season has started

If you've got a parcel of land, it's worth what someone is prepared to pay for it. Like a house, or a car or any other material goods. Who would buy 250 hectares of land? Another farmer, maybe. More likely dozens of other farmers. If they had the disposable income to do so, or if they had a sympathetic bank manager (oxymoron). It's designated agricultural land so it's not as if it's going to be available for development, even if anyone wanted to develop it.
What you can't do is just leave it fallow and say "well, I'm sitting on a million quid in assets so I never need to work again".
Certainly in my neck of the woods, I see no evidence of cash-rich farmers.
What a bizarre observation.
Don't want to end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.
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