Main picture

“Back to the Roots” – Collaboration & Learning in Alternative Grain Networks

In the framework of the COACH project we had the opportunity to work together with many inspiring initiatives, such as one of the original members of the Farmer-Miller-Baker Network’s  in  Hungary, the Artisan Bakery of Pipacs. Between the 20th and 28th of October  2023, Ádám Fülöp, the founder, was able to visit two farmer bakers and a mill constructor in the South of France thanks to the project. You can find his reflections on the experience below. 

“[The trip] was of utmost importance since this meant going back to the roots. In 2012, I had the chance to spend three months on the family farm of Jean-Francois Berthellot, a legendary farmer-miller-baker in France, member of the French seed network Réseaux Semences Paysanne, and collector of old wheat varieties. Not long after that, with two other fellows, we founded the Pipacs Pékség in Budapest, a certified organic bakery, one of the first artisan bakeries in the country.”


1st visit – Philippe Lauzes, “Tout autour des moulins”, Carcassonne


“The Hungarian farmer-miller-bakery network should know by this time the name of Philippe Lauzes and his Astrié mills since one of the farmer-millers in the network, Nobilis Ágoston, has a Lauzes mill. He provides many of us with the highest quality flour. (See the spot film in the Hub) “Tout autour des moulins” is the bakery’s name, run by Philippe’s wife. Seeing the bakery and the atelier where he constructs the mills was a special moment. Seeing how they work and integrate the mill into the bakery’s everyday life was inspiring and a model to follow.”



2nd visit – Stéphane Marrou, “Le pain levain”, Azillanet


“Stéphane is a baker in the small village of Azillanet in the South of France. His model is close to the farmer-baker model, which means working with stone-milled flour (possibly from an Astrié mill), a wood-fired oven, working with direct doughs, and using exquisitely sourdough for all types of bread. They prefer using flours of old wheat varieties (dynamic populations) in the atelier of Stéphane. The small shop is next to the oven, opening only at 16h. This model is typical for French farmer-bakers and new-wave bakers in the countryside who prefer a convivial space instead of an urban business model based on coffee and croissants. Stéphane is deeply enrooted in the local network and is also a member of the cooperative from where his flour comes.”


After a day of baking in front of the wood-fired Farjas oven, J-F.B., Stéphane Marrou


Future perspectives:

“We envisage an encounter of the Hungarian farmer-miller-baker network in 2024. The aim is to refresh it with international participants, including the people I had the chance to meet now.”


This experience has been one of the many opportunities for collaboration and learning in the framework of the COACH project. If you’d like to learn more about Alternative Grain Networks, check out the course we have coccreated with the help of some of the inspiring initiatives, such as the Artisanal Bakery of Pipacs.

You can access the course free of charge after registering on the online learning platform of ESSRG.

Start your journey HERE.