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Let food be thy medicine! Farmers hold the key to our health: how do we pay them for it?
What is the real impact on your health of what you eat? And, maybe more important, how that food has been grown or, in case of animal protein, what those animals have eaten? How can we maximize nutritional and environmental quality while maintaining the health of our animals and the food we eat?
This deep dive into nutrient density on how Pierre Weill, co-founder of the non-profit organization Bleu-Blanc-Coeur, created a 2b euro a year certification program, paying farmers more for better quality food. Starting with the simple (but very complex) concept: farmers hold the key to our health and if we don’t change the practices in the field we need to find chemical medicines.
Starting from the Soil
Pierre shares what has led him into the interest of working in agriculture and deciding to dedicate his life in the industry and to Bleu-Blanc-Coeur, which started from focusing on the soil instead of the animal’s and human’s health.
“So the link between harmony, nature, the environment, and the balance in our body did exist. After relating this, we just measured the impact of the renewed balance of the animal host and the human host. I like to talk about this nice story on a daily basis. This was not always exciting. When you have a look at the last thirty years, it was very exciting because we did a lot of research work on balancing the soil, balancing the animal diet, and balancing the human diet.” – Pierre Weill
Changing the Composition
The first step Pierre and his team worked on was the impact on the cow’s fertility and how the nutritional quality of the animal diet can enhance better human health. They underwent through a clinical trial in order to determine how and where this all affects the human body. This later on proved how the saying “you are what you eat” as well as “you are what the chickens/pig/cows ate”.
“We’re very strong in terms of statistics. We completely changed the composition, not only in the blood, but also of the composition of the red blood cells. Which means all the cells of the body change. Not according to the human regimen, but according to the animal diet.”- Pierre Weill
Making Measurement Easy
Pierre discusses the Bleu-Blanc-Coeur fatty acid profile and how this has contributed into making measurements easy. He continues to discuss why farmers have been resistant to changing the systems through the years. However, he shares that these same farmers are adapting to the Bleu-Blanc-Coeur aggregation of results and earning in the process. The hope is to build a system that can benefit the farmers and help them get the income they deserve.
“When you deal with public health and the climate, you cannot say that you do it only for the 10% of the people who can buy it. You have to do it for everybody. So the accessibility we did see is quite interesting for tomorrow. Of course, we incorporate new demand about animal welfare and the link to the local production, etc. But we wanted the farmer to be paid for it.” – Pierre Weill
Taking Care of Produce
Pierre discusses the importance of taking care of the meat that is produced, whether this may be chickens, cows, pigs, etc. It’s not about consuming less meat but rather taking care of how your meat is produced. This can have great benefits in human health and animal health as well.
“I don’t say you have to, we have to eat less meat and less product for sure. But we also, at the same time, have to take care of the ways meat and animal products are produced. It’s the same for nutrition. And it’s not only a consumer behavior. The farmer behavior is just as important as the consumer’s behavior. They hold the key.” – Pierre Weill
Other important points discussed
Koen and Pierre discussed these points in this episode:
- Pierre Weill’s dream today
- What Pierre thinks is the connection between Omega-3, Omega-6, and human health during Covid-19
- The reason why Pierre is thought of as the Robin Hood of agriculture
- What Pierre would do if he were to wake up with €1 Billion in his bank account tomorrow morning
To know more about Pierre and Bleu-Blanc-Coeur and how you can improve the nutritional and environmental quality in your food, download and listen to this episode.
Pierre Weill is a French agronomist works since 1970 in the breeding sector. In 1992, he creates his own company: Valorex on a “new feeding concept” far from the dominant “corn-soy” system. This was the starting point of a nice adventure with a lot articles in the scientific press describing experiments involving the link between animal feeding as well as the environmental effects of breeding activity.
The strong link between forage choices – soil quality – animal and human health – Life cycle assessment of balanced food chain is the basis of creation of the Bleu-Blanc-Coeur NPA in 2000, an organization whose goal is to promote responsible agriculture with the objective of improving the nutritional and environmental quality of food.. Today, more than 7000 farmers, 1500 physicians, 1000 food and Feed companies + chefs, scientists, consumers, etc. are members of the various association’s sectors.
Bleu-Blanc-Coeur (Healthy farming association), active in 12 countries is supported by French state as well as United Nations. Since 2012, Pierre is also president of the “Valorial” cluster a group of 300 organization from economic and academic world which work on “tomorrow’s food and feed”.
- Clinical studies
- Pierre’s interview with John Kempf
- John Kempf, what would he do with a 1 billion dollar investment fund?
- Nobel 1982 medicine omega 3 /6
- Dan Kittredge – Making farmers focus on nutrient dense food
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