Emmanuel Macron in Brittany to Meet the Agricultural and Food Industry

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Emmanuel Macron chats with an employee in a Super U in Saint-Pol-de-Léon, April 22, 2020.

The President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron is in Finistère this Wednesday, visiting an agricultural cooperative and then a supermarket, as a sign of support for the food industry.

While the ministers are making their first projects for deconfinement, Emmanuel Macron arrived in Brittany on Wednesday 22nd April 2020, in the middle of the afternoon, to support a “second line” but decisive food chain in the face of the coronavirus epidemic.

Back in the field, in Finistère: the Head of State first visits the Agricultural Group of Joint Operation (GAEC) of Roué, in the town of Cléder, specialized in market gardening. According to the Elysée, it is a question of exchanging “with professionals on the mobilization of the agricultural world to guarantee the continuity of production”.

“I come to thank the employees who help feed the country,” he said. “Thank you to the farm in France. She held on. We can be proud of it ”. Then stop at the Super U store in Saint-Pol-de-Léon for a “presentation of the partnership with local producers”.

Since the start of the crisis, the executive has insisted that France is protected from scarcity thanks to the wealth of its agricultural and agrifood production. “I hope that our fellow citizens will be reconciled with this fine job which is that of feeding the nation,” insisted the head of state.

But many voices criticize the consequences of intensive industrial agriculture, the need to import certain food products or the effects on the climate and environmental crisis.

Emmanuel Macron in a tomato greenhouse in Cléder in Brittany, April 22, 2020.
Emmanuel Macron in a tomato greenhouse in Cléder in Brittany, April 22, 2020. (© POOL / AFP / STEPHANE MAHE)

First plans for deconfinement

Emmanuel Macron took the road to Brittany after a council of ministers, the occasion of a first round table on the measures to be taken in view of the deconfinement announced for May 11th.

The various ministers concerned have given Matignon the first version of their sectoral plans, which will be integrated by the end of the month into a global project looking like a puzzle.

No precise indication at this stage, the government spokeswoman Sibeth Ndiaye refusing to comment on press information on a possible reopening of restaurants, cafes and bars on June 15th or the maintenance at first of the limitation of interregional travel.

Nothing is acted out “for the simple reason that we are very active today alongside Jean Castex (responsible for coordinating deconfinement) and within each of the ministries working on this deconfinement strategy “, She assured.

While the government is arrested after several nights of incidents in the Paris suburbs, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner assured that “we are ensuring that confinement is respected everywhere in France”, while rejecting the idea that it would be less strictly applied in sensitive neighbourhoods.

10 million people on partial unemployment

In the spotlight, the Minister of Education Jean-Michel Blanquer had already detailed Tuesday his plans for a gradual resumption of school from May 11. This return, eagerly awaited by many parents since the start of confinement in mid-March, will be spread over three weeks by class level, with groups of 15 students maximum.

The health crisis also has unprecedented economic consequences. Partial unemployment has crossed the 10 million mark, more than one in two in the private sector, a “considerable” figure, according to Minister of Labor Muriel Pénicaud.

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