Full-scale test for Veragrow and two agricultural cooperatives, innovation and research

Alexandre Bocage, Théo Saint-Martin and Alexandre Foulon first went from laboratory experiments to the first tests on potted plants. Then the three co-founders of Veragrow tested their natural fertilizer on a plot of a few square meters before finally moving on to field crops.

This anchoring is due in part to these three friends, their partners, the two Norman agricultural cooperatives Agrial and NatUp. Thanks to their network of farmers, they allowed them to put their biostimulant to the test in agricultural production.

Full-scale testing of future customers

The earthworm is the basis of Veragrow, a start-up set up in 2019 in Eure. It is indispensable for the horticultural ecosystem, it cultivates the soil and recycles organic waste into compost. It is this talent that Veragrow wants to take advantage of: “We regain the earthworm’s natural digestion, integrating it into seed coatings and soil preparation products or leaf products to boost the plant’s natural cycle.”

These biostimulants make it possible both to limit the amount of plant health input and to increase agricultural yields. They are now in the hands of farmers from the cooperation network NatUp and Agrial. “These collaborations with the giants of Normandy’s agriculture give us a very interesting distribution network. We develop, they test in the field,” explains Alexandre Bocage. a detailed analysis.

These tests, before a marketing is planned for 2023, allow the startup to optimize its recipes, but also to address its first customers. “The habits of the French farmer are very slow to change. These partnerships make it possible to convince operators of the quality of our products, even before they are available for sale, ”adds the co-founder of Veragrow.

Stay tuned for the latest innovations

Collaborative groups also benefit from this: The rapidly evolving market for biostimulants needs to be closely monitored. The rise in the price of fertilizers, consumer demands for healthier crops and increasingly restrictive legislation are forcing large agricultural groups to remain aware of initiatives such as those from Veragrow.

“It is important today to bring innovation to our members. We must be looking to support our farmers in the face of the challenges ahead,” insists Marie Le Neouanic, head of the agronomy service at NatUp. This monitoring allows cooperative groups to to quickly position itself on promising products, but also to promote economic activity in the area. “We are linked to the ecosystem formed by companies in Normandy. We are a partner with Village by CA Rouen, the accelerator that comes with Veragrow, ”continues Marie Le Neouanic.

Veragrow now offers three biostimulants: seed coat, fertilizer and foliar products.
– Veragrow

Be careful and independent

The start-up approaches its partnerships with enthusiasm, but also with caution. On the one hand, biostimulants are only part of the young company’s activity. It also develops various vermicomposters for schools, restaurants or businesses. In addition, Veragrow is committed to maintaining other alliances and does not hesitate to create new ones. “It’s about not putting all your eggs in one basket, you have to keep the door open for other collaborations,” emphasizes Alexandre Bocage.

Veragrow makes sure to maintain its independence, not to appear attached to such or such a large group so as not to deter other potential customers. The startup also retains the intellectual property of its technology. And despite ongoing fundraising, Alexandre Bocage does not want to bring a co-op into the company’s capital. We do not want to be tied on hands and feet. “A position that, however, could develop in the future, especially when it comes to moving forward to industrialization. Cooperatives could then provide financial support as a minority shareholder.

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