Pascal Goumain, the owner of Saumon de France, has since 1991 been farming salmon in Normandy. Since the COVID-19 broke out he has had to keep focusing on the local market, instead of hoping to expand to a broader market.
SalmonBusiness has earlier on reported how the closed borders have forced the small french salmon farmer to depend on online sales of their salmon instead.
The owner now states to the local newspaper France Bleu, that the crisis has cost the company 30 per cent of its turnover, and has only made it by their branding: made in France.
“We lost almost 30% of our turnover related to the catering sector, with the cessation of restaurants, wholesalers, and companies like Metro. We were fortunate enough to be able to readjust these volumes there to smokers and industrialists, but also to the level of large-scale distribution which has been interested in the brand: made in France and we have strengthened our supplies to French agriculturists,” says Pascal Goumain to France Bleu and explains, that the sales have gone over to e-commerce locally, where the marketing of being locally produced has been successful.
“We had practically the same volumes of turnover in e-commerce as what we usually had in stores.”
Like many other small growing companies, Saumon de France has been forced to drop international extension plans during the pandemic.
“We have a few international projects that are on standby for the moment. We have a project in Singapore and another in Shanghai (China). We still have an experiment going on in Switzerland on an underground farm with aquaponics. For the moment, it has been postponed. As long as travelling is not possible, we will really stay focused on production in Normandy, and the businesses that already exist here.”
In regards to future plans, the farmer hopes the hospitality sector will open up slowly and things make its way back to before the COVID-19.
“I hope from now on, the catering sector will quickly open up and we will be able to find normal activity levels. The entire industry needs to return to normal. But if not, there is still a place for French fishing and aquaculture among consumers.”