fromage blanc

Date: 2011 Funds: EAFRD Amount of co-financing UE: 16 458 € Alsace

Creation of a dairy processing plant in Alsace

Themes: The European next door ; Agriculture ; Aid to businesses
Beneficiary: EARL Schmitt - La petite prairie

découpage france alsace-lorraine

The EARL Schmitt Company in Ranspach-le-Haut is a mixed farming and livestock farm which produces 300,000 litres of milk every year, sold exclusively to the SODIAAL cooperative. Rather than expand, the family opted to diversify by creating a dairy processing plant designed for the production of yoghurts, fromage frais and milk.

This new activity is being run by the eldest daughter, Émilie Schmitt.

After graduating from school with a science baccalauréat , she decided to dedicate herself to breeding. After obtaining a BTS (advanced technician diploma) in "animal husbandry", she worked as part of a co-op programme in the Haute-Savoie and then Bas-Rhin departments, before joining the family farming business. Officially a young farmer since January 2012, she participates in farm work while developing her plant, with a view to processing and directly selling approximately 10,000 litres of milk per year.

The Chamber of Agriculture provided useful advice and information for the implementation of this new activity, while the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) helped finance the structural works, walls, floors, cold storage room, oven, as well as pasteurisation equipment: curdling vats, table, drainer, etc.

These working tools have helped the farmer save considerable time on a daily basis.

As this diversification goes hand in hand with the search for new customers, Émilie Schmitt has invested in producer-to-consumer sales, with a regular presence in numerous farmers' markets, which has allowed her to develop a customer base and generate loyalty thanks to the quality of her products.

She also opened a small shop within the farm and implemented communication tools to promote her activity (LEADER project of the Sundgau Local Action Group). Having applied to join the Bienvenue à la Ferme network (Welcome to the Farm), the EARL Schmitt Company has committed to implementing a Quality Plan in the processing plant, with help from the regional Chamber of Agriculture of Alsace.

Europe helped finance the farm shop as well as project communication.

Additional information

  • Duration: November 2011 to December 2013 (2 years)
  • Total cost: 82 288 €


Emilie Schmitt – dairy producer

Emilie Schmitt – dairy producer

"Thanks to European aid, I was able to buy the dairy processing plant, which allows me to produce yoghurts and fromage frais that we sell directly from the farm and in local markets.

I was able to realise my dream: working on my parents' farm. We're doing so well that we are planning the automation of the potting and labelling processes and may soon be hiring".

  • Key numbers
  • 10,000 litres of milk processed every year

    40 Montbéliarde breed dairy cows

    30 hectares of grass to feed the cows