The family-operated Leprince Farm covers 450 hectares of land near Lille, France, and grows potatoes. The business was formed in 1991 when four farms – each run by a member of the Leprince family – merged into one.
Since then, it has focused on adopting quality systems, acquiring high-quality equipment and achieving best practices. The farm is vigilant against disease and has incorporated the Mileos® system into its blight management program. It is ISO 14001 accredited, GLOBALG.A.P. assured and is in the process of becoming part of the High Environmental Value (HEV) program.
Leprince Farm became ISO 14001 accredited in 2009, in cooperation with a group of farmers (Terr’Avenir) working together. The ISO 14001 certification comprises a management system that allows the farm to continuously improve its environmental performance. Leprince Farm is also GLOBALG.A.P. assured, and is in the process of becoming part of the High Environmental Value (HEV) program.
The farm has incorporated the Mileos® decision support system into its blight management program. The system gathers information from a weather station, and enables the farm to apply fungicides only when there is an established risk, providing optimum results.
A Global Positioning System (GPS) is fitted to the sprayer and the fertilizer spreader. This limits application inaccuracies by automatically switching off the sprayer boom sections or the fertilizer spreaders when they pass over previously treated areas, or when they go beyond field boundaries. Improving application accuracy saves on inputs (and their associated cost), limits crop stress, and reduces application time and operator stress.
Yellow-colored traps are placed in the potato fields to monitor aphid levels. This policy ensures that aphid control is targeted at periods of high activity/infestation, and results in the optimum economic and environmental outcome.
The farm’s regime of irrigation scheduling ensures water is applied in accurate quantities as weather, soil and crop conditions dictate. These actions help ensure potato crops are able to maintain consistent growth throughout the season and, by providing sufficient soil moisture availability during important growth stages such as tuber initiation and potato bulking, also help optimize yields and quality.
Soil nitrogen levels are tested in spring to ensure nitrogen application rates are matched to soil reserves and plant requirements; this reduces issues of over-application and nutrient losses.
The farm has in place a comprehensive training and development program, resulting in consistently high-quality products, low staff turnover and good staff morale.
Learn more about Ghislain Leprince’s story
Explore the case study, where you’ll find extra details on how the farm has performed against the program’s good practice standards and criteria, what external research reveals about the producer’s actions and how improved sustainability benefits them.
“I am delighted to be recognized as a McDonald's Flagship Farmer. It's a further step in promoting the Good Agricultural Practices used on this farm and more broadly by potato farmers. Being a member of Flagship Farmers gives me the opportunity to communicate to a larger public and demonstrate that we are indeed producing a raw material which is sustainable and preserves our soils for the future generations.”