Inauguration of the new Chef de Baie at the La Rochelle large harbour

23 March | 2018

Exporting the French quality is the commitment of the Soufflet Group to promote French cereals internationally.

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An inescapable player in the cereals sector, the Soufflet Group is today inaugurating its new Chef de Baie silo.
With a capacity of 63,000 tonnes, a total storage capacity of 188,000 tonnes is reached on the Soufflet site at La Rochelle. With this new silo, the aim is two-fold: to develop export business, the Group’s historic vocation, both from the quantity and quality points of view. The stake is to increase the competitiveness of the French cereals sectors with more effective infrastructures more protective of the environment. 

More favourable optimised logistics flows and carbon assessment
Up to now, 50,000 trucks were needed to transport 1.6 million tonnes of cereals from the Group’s port facilities at a distance of about one kilometre quay to ship. Located "dockside", the new silo provides substantial productivity gains with loading directly onto the ships. At the same time, the Group is developing rail freight, which reduces truck wheelbarrowing by two thirds. These logistics advances improve the site’s carbon assessment. Furthermore, special investment was made to set up a system for cleaning the grain and  extract the dust in order to maintain air quality. The new silo is therefore a tool in line with environmental expectations.

A silo to help boost the region
An investment of €30 million was needed for the new Chef de Baie silo. This project is a strategic one for the dynamism of the region, particularly to develop outlets for Grand Ouest farm products. The aim is to increase the tonnage of cereals exported from the current 1.6 million tonnes to more than 2 million. For many years now, the Group has been working to increase the value of French farmers’ products on international markets with fast-growing demands and requirements.

The Chef de Baie silo also guarantees greater security for the personnel who increased from 16 to 22 persons. Furthermore, 45 direct jobs were created in the harbour zone, of which10 are directly assigned to the site operation, as a result of the new silo. 
 

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