Philibert Savours, the French leader in liquid and dehydrated sourdoughs for professional bread and pastry bakers will invest €15 million to build a new factory at their site in Crottet, in the Ain, near the Swiss border.
In order to bring the project to fruition, Philibert Savours – a family-owned business with 48 employees that produces 15 million liters (4 million gallons) of sourdough a year and generates €12 million in revenue – obtained €2.7 million in aid from France’s “France Relance” stimulus package. In the long term, that will also allow the company to create 25 to 35 jobs.
With the new factory, Pascal Philibert, the founding CEO, intends to “double the company’s production and conquer the world.” Earning over half of their revenue from export within the next five years, as opposed to the current 30%, will be the key to achieving that.
Having stayed true to their eco-responsible commitment for nearly 40 years, the new building will be “remarkable in both environmental and economic terms,” Pascal Philibert points out.
The compact future building – 4,000 square meters (43,000 square feet) for a capacity of 6,000 tons – will be highly automated. A solar roof, insulated fermentation tanks, and drying without prior cooling to reduce energy use; collecting washing water for farmers, and more: the factory intends
“to be integrated into a totally circular ‘blue’ economy,” that produces no waste, “including the vapor from drying, our main emission,” Pascal Philibert specifies.
The factory, which should be in service by late 2022, will produce natural, GMO- and gluten-free products developed at the company’s research institute in Lyon. For that sector, based on responsible, monitored farming, Philibert Savours will continue to grow the “virtuous and less expensive” local-network model by increasing collaborations with nearby cooperatives and flour mills, along the lines of how buckwheat was reintroduced into the nearby Dombes in 2018.
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