How our cooperative model works
Together, we are stronger. This simple, common-sense principle was instrumental to the creation of the first cooperatives and the growth of farms in North-East France. It underpins our cooperative Group. The word “cooperation” both identifies who we are and guides what we do to build a sustainable commercial and agricultural model that benefits our member-farmers. At VIVESCIA, we have even made this principle one of our guiding values: “work together”. Today, as the world faces climate change and revolutions in agricultural and the food industry, this value is more relevant than ever. It is our collective responsibility.
A collective enterprise since its inception, now a model for the future
Our cooperative approach runs through everything we do. Naturally, you’ll find it written in our articles of association. It has guided us for almost a century, setting our path as we joined forces to build a sustainable commercial and agricultural model that benefits everyone, and first and foremost our cooperative members.
VIVESCIA’s purpose is immutable. Our cooperative model connects upstream farming activities and downstream industry to create value so that our cooperative members can make a decent, sustainable living as agricultural entrepreneurs. As a “Grain community” of farmers and employees, we are committed to nurturing our grain and nourishing people, while constantly adapting to their changing needs and expectations.
From field to fork… We have operations all along the grain value chain and work tirelessly to strengthen ties between the farmers who grow the grain, the customers who process it and the consumers who eat it. That’s what makes our cooperative Group a model for the future!
10,000 cooperative members making decisions together
Our Group is built around the VIVESCIA cooperative. It is an agricultural cooperative: a business created by farmers, for farmers. It belongs to these farmers collectively, and they govern it democratically based on the principle of “one person, one vote”.
Our cooperative members’ sovereign power is exercised through the board of administrators that represents them. The administrators are elected by the member-farmers. The president of VIVESCIA is a farmer elected by the board of administrators. It sets the Group's objectives and strategy and monitors their realisation. It is in close and constant contact with the executive committee which has responsibility for the Group’s results and economic performance. Farmers are also elected to sit on the boards of directors of our food processing subsidiaries VIVESCIA Industries.
VIVESCIA Industries (a partnership limited by shares) is controlled by its majority shareholder, VIVESCIA cooperative Group. Investors and employees of the Group can become involved in its governance. However, the majority of the shares are held by the cooperative. Member-farmers sit on its various governing bodies (the SICOM, the supervisory board and the specific committees)
A cooperative model that creates connections
Our agricultural cooperative works across eight French departments: Ardennes, Marne, Haute-Marne, Aube, Meuse, Aisne, Seine-et-Marne, and Vosges. Our cooperative model enables this vast territory to thrive by fostering and maintaining strong ties with the farmers who work the land.
There are more than 352 farmers who are elected as representatives in the cooperative’s 18 “sections”. The highlights of the cooperative year include plenary annual meetings and regular section and territory council meetings, where we explain our cooperative Group’s strategic direction and present our plans for the future. These events are also opportunities to network, discuss ideas, ask questions and build for the future together.
Our cooperative model and strong regional presence supports the local economy and creates jobs. With operations along the entire grain value chain, our cooperative Group works constantly to unite and bring together those who grow the grain (member-farmers), those who provide them with bespoke advice (the teams at the Cooperative and its agricultural subsidiaries), those who process the grain (employees of VIVESCIA Industries and our food processing customers), and all our partners and the local authorities.
As you can see, our cooperative model means that our Group is all about connections: our connection to the earth and to the planet that we strive to protect, our connections to the people that we help to feed, and our connections to the regions we operate and invest in to develop exceptional value chains to ensure the long-term future of local farms.