Sorghum at SIA (the Salon international de l’agriculture)


In March 2024, Paris hosted the sixtieth edition of the SIA. The event saw more than 600 000 visitors interested in agriculture. Over one thousand French and worldwide exhibitors were present, including SEMAE, a French interprofessional organisation for seeds and seedlings, at the stand of which a sorghum conference was held.

Variety Innovation, Industries, Profitability: the Three Future Pillars of Sorghum, in France and Europe

On the TV set of the Village Semences show, organised by SEMAE, the sorghum conference gave the floor to three speakers:


Julie Toussaint, Head of Semences de France and of Eurosorgho, who emphasized the benefits of sorghum (in particular, its resilience to climate change) and the key part played by genetics, thanks to which an ever wider range of products reaches the market. «In water stress conditions, sorghum – which has a very deep rooting system – keeps producing biomass, which is the opposite of what other cereals will do. Although it is not a magical panacea, sorghum provides diversification in farms». The expert encouraged farmers to make more room for sorghum in their rotations. «Sorghum areas tend to vary from one year to the next; sometimes they double, depending on the year, but the market visibly absorbs the whole production, every time».



Martin Gomez, Sorghum ID expert in charge with the international sorghum development, stressed the diversity of sorghum markets and the need to further develop the processing sectors. «The industry players are dynamic and new initiatives appear every year, bringing forth various products and at various scales», he mentioned. «In France, the feed industry is the main outlet for sorghum, but we see new projects emerging every year; it is very encouraging». As the first European sorghum producer, France could take example from Hungary, where a well-structured industry has developed over several years.




Eudes Coutte, sorghum grower in Île de France, stressed the need to consider the inclusion of sorghum in rotations in profitability terms. «I have been growing sorghum ever since I started farming, four years ago. I have always placed it above some other grains because I believe it to be a promising crop, which must have its place in our farms. Its yields may not yet be at the levels that we can hope to attain, but genetics will help us progress. Even with its current yields, sorghum is a profitable crop for one’s rotations. It requires no particular investment. It has fewer costs, because you don’t irrigate it, you don’t treat it, and you use very little fertilizer for it. Sorghum stimulates the yield of the following crop, because it is a good crop to plant after. When you look at the value added of sorghum at the scale of the rotation, it is a profitable crop».


To watch the show, click here:

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