Tag Archives: support local farmers

Marc & the Ferme Fourmanoy near Chièvres, Belgium

Marc runs the Ferme Fourmanoy in Tongre, near Chièvres, Belgium. He actually grows organic grains and uses his own flour to bake the breads and pastries sold at the farm bakery!

"Je garantis ce produits sans aucun adjuvant chimique." I guarantee that this products has no chemical additives.

“Je garantis ce produit sans aucun adjuvant chimique.” I guarantee that this product has no chemical additives.

Proud to manage the production process from beginning to end, Marc sought out ‘ancient’ varieties of wheat, spelt and rye (in order to ensure quality and avoid the health issues with modern wheat). He saves and sows his own seeds, since these ‘ancient’ varieties no longer circulate on the seed market.

Our GAC* in Mons purchases bread (spelt, sourdough, multigrain, …) and pastries from Marc every other week. When we visited his farm, he told us that it was a little strange for him to deliver to a GAC (CSA/Coop) because we are his only customers with whom he doesn’t have direct contact. Person to person contact is important for him – all his other sales are direct from the small store at his farm or at his stand on the market. (He is on the rue des Juifs at the Friday market in Mons. Other markets listed below.)

IMG_2151a

When I recently visited his farm, the bread was still baking, so I only have pictures of pastries. I regret not taking a picture of the behind-the-scenes bakery. It’s charming. I hope to update with more photos after my next visit.

Crème patissière - pomme (Apple and Belgian pastry cream tart)

Crème patissière – pomme (Apple and Belgian pastry cream tart)

Chocolate eclairs

Chocolate eclairs

Tartelette aux prunes (Mini plum tarts) & abricot (apricot tarts)

Tartelette aux prunes (Mini plum tarts) & abricot (apricot tarts)

Fourmanoy's 'moelleux au chocolat' (chocolate cake)

Fourmanoy’s ‘moelleux au chocolat’ (chocolate cake)

"Tarte à la crème avec un peu de citron"

This was a surprise hit – kind of like cheesecake, but that’s not the right word. Anyway, it was with a hint of lemon. Delish.

The prices are exceptionally reasonable, especially for organic artisan made bread

The prices are exceptionally reasonable, especially for organic artisan made bread

Quick French – English Grain (céréale) translations for his price list above:

Froment = wheat, épeautre = spelt, seigle = rye

noix = walnut, tournesol = sunflower (seeds)

levain = sourdough

Marc sells organic bread, pastries, cakes, eggs, yogurt and more at the following markets in Hainaut: Marché d’Ath on Thursday, Marché de Mons on Friday, Marché de Tournai on Saturday and Marché de Chièvres on Sunday.

His farm store is open on Wednesday afternoon from 2pm to 7pm and Saturday all day.

Because I'm a chocoholic.

Because I’m a chocoholic.

– Contact Info –

Ferme Fourmanoy

Rue Albert Quivy 12

Tongre – Saint Martin

Belgium

068/65.90.51

* A GAC or ‘Groupement d’Achats Collectifs’ is the Belgian name for a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). (Also called GAS, GASAP ‘Groupement d’achat Solidaire à l’Agriculture Paysanne, … or AMAP in France) Our GAC in Mons was created by a group of friends and families who wanted to buy directly from local farmers and support local organic agriculture. We order meat, bread, cheese and vegetables from various local farmers and meet every other week to split the order between households. More details another day.

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5 Simple Ways to Make the World a Better Place, Starting in Mons, Belgium

1. Change your energy provider from Electrabel to Lampiris. It takes about 10 minutes. You’ll probably end up saving money. You will shift your support of nuclear power to wind, solar and biomass energy.

Find your current electrical bill. It has all the info you need on it. Call 080040123 or go online here. Fill out the info in about 10 minutes. You don’t need your landlord’s permission. You don’t need to contact Electrabel. Lampiris deals with them to make the change.

2. Support local farmers.

You can try to find them at the market in Mons. The Friday market is from 8am to 1pm, with most local farmers in the rue des Juifs. The Sunday market is also from 8am to 1pm, extending from Place Nervienne to Place du Beguinage.

The local farmers are usually pretty inconspicuous, because they don’t have a ton to offer. They don’t usually have bananas or pineapples, but there are a few exceptions that mix their own offer with exotic fare. I’ll see if any of them will let me post their pictures and get back to you. 🙂

Another fun way to fun way to support local farmers is to go harvest your veggies at their place. I know of two women who grow organic produce, but they’re not really close to Mons center, so bring a friend for the ride!

Joëlle, at the Ferme du Gibet in Neufvilles (Soignies) uses the cycles of the moon to grow biodynamic vegetables. (I’ll explain that another day.) Address: Chemin du Vieux Gibet, 11, à Soignies.

Marie harvests her organic crop right before your eyes in Dour, on Wednesdays from 5pm to 7pm and Sundays from 10am to 1pm. Here‘s a news report of her (in French).

She’s just across from the Ferme du Moranfayt, where you can find organic meat and dairy as well as a little organic food store, open Tuesday through Friday from 9 to 6pm, Saturday from 10 to 5 and Sunday from 9 to noon. Address: 14, rue de Cauderloo in Dour.

3. Move your savings to an ethical, transparent bank or co-op. Like Triodos or New B Bank. Or support a local project with Credal. Or a microloan with Kiva.

4. Walk. Or ride a bike. Cyclists can join the Graqc and get insurance coverage. More info at the Maison des Cyclistes at the Mons train station. And, or, carshare with Cambio.

5. Compost your kitchen scraps. I believe that composting helps us better understand the cycle of life. It doesn’t start with us. It doesn’t end with us. Don’t break the cycle by tossing it in the trash. Its such a simple, yet concrete action.

6. (Bonus!) Do something that makes you happy. Especially if you’re a parent. Especially if you’re stressed. Program it as a priority in your schedule this week. Go dancing or sing or paint or run or visit a friend. Happier people make the world a better place.