Carrefour Unveils Its Urban Agriculture Initiatives
For the official inauguration of the vegetable garden on the roof of the Villiers-en-Bière hypermarket in Seine-et-Marne, Carrefour is sharing its ideas for introducing short distribution channels at its stores.
Stores which are becoming production sites
Villiers-en-Bière vegetable garden: over a 1200 m² surface area, ornamental and aromatic fruit trees and fruit and vegetable plants are being grown, using methods inspired by agro-ecology. It is managed by students from the Bougainville de Brie-Comte-Robert agricultural and horticultural school. They also share information about the garden with neighbouring schools and customers at the store. The garden should begin to bear its first fruit in early May and its yield will be sold in the store.
Other vegetable gardens are set to be created all through France: in Mérignac, a 6000 m² in-ground garden is being created near the Carrefour store. In the Paris region, the Sainte-Geneviève des Bois hypermarket, the Charonne Carrefour Market and Carrefour’s Massy head office have all enlisted the services of start-up company Agripolis, which specialises in developing in situ gardens using the aeroponics process.
By signing the "Objectif 100 Hectares" charter, Carrefour is committing – alongside the Paris Town Hall – to planting throughout the capital, the aim being to convert 200 ha of Paris's built-up area into green spaces – a third of which will be for urban farming – between now and 2020.
Local supply contracts
Carrefour is also entering into local partnerships to sell products grown using agro-ecological farming techniques. In 2016, the retailer joined forces with the Ferme Akuo du Gâtinais located on a wind farm – the first farm to use permaculture in the Paris region – in order to supply local Carrefour Bio stores. Carrefour gives preference to short distribution channels by selling local products (some 60,000 products) and products made using agro-ecological methods – such as strawberries grown without synthetic pesticides.
With all of these varied projects in which it is involved, Carrefour is helping to ensure food of a high quality by selling ultra-fresh products from short distribution channels. By reducing the distances that these new products have to travel, the retailer is helping to preserve the planet's biodiversity and reducing CO2 emissions, while at the same time tackling food wastage.