Tarn-et-Garonne, south-west of France

The pilot project territory corresponds to the French department of Tarn-et-Garonne, situated in the south-west of France. The climate is oceanic with soft and wet winters and dry and hot summers. The Quercy area (North West of the department) is characterized by colder winters and hotter summers.

Farmers involved in the pilot project are mainly located on hills areas with steep slopes where the erosion risk and fertility issues are high for superficial clay limestone soils. The steep slopes could increase the risk of pesticides and nitrates transfer into the environment.

 © Solagro

© Solagro

 Crops and livestock

Productions are very diversified: fruits, vegetables, wine, livestock and arable crops. The main production, arable crops, represents 40 % of the UAA. Almost half of the farmers irrigate their crops (essentially corn and permanent crops). The department leads at a national scale in fruit production (greengage plums, apples, melon, hazelnut, table grapes…). Organic farming is observed in 6% of the UAA of the department.


Cultivation area
In 2010, the department consisted of 5 280 farms with an average UAA of 40 ha (regional average: 48 ha).

Cultivation types

Conventional, organic farming, PDO, High environmental value (under project)

Actions developed within the project

  • Preserve
  • Mosaic of crops and habitats
  • Reduce soil erosion, water pollution through reduction of pesticides, soil management including no-tillage techniques, long crop rotation with introduction of legumes and cover crops.

Proposal of Measures

  • Restauration and new implementation of hedges and ripisylves (for bats and birds)
  • Alternative methods to herbicides on cereals (crop rotation, intercropping, cover crops, no-tillage…)
  • Introducing legumes into crop rotation to reduce pesticide + fertilizer use and improve soil quality
  • Maintain the dead trees or cavity trees (nesting sites for birds or bats)
  • Conserve water points
  • Restore functional connectivity
  • Training session on biodiversity issues (conservation biological control)