Big apple festival this weekend in Villeneuve d´Ascq
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Since 1984 and the creation of the orchard of the Regional Genetic Conservatory, near the Lac du Héron in Villeneuve d'Ascq (North), in spaces made deliberately unconstructable, the apple celebrates every two years. S
28 exhibitors will present (and sometimes taste) more than 400 varieties of apples and pears from 750 species of apple trees and 350 pear trees inventoried in the conservatory orchard.
Now is the time to measure how far we have come, considering the gathering of these endangered species. Not all of them are intended to be marketed, but at least they remain alive and preserved.
Consumers already owe the CRG the rebirth of several varieties such as Saint-Mathieu or Reinette de France. The next will be the Reinette du Héron, in the process of being approved before being marketed in 2 years.
The creation of the Hauts-de-France region represents a new field of investigation for the conservatoire team. The growing orchard makes room for species spotted in Picardy where the tradition of the apple has been strong. The ciders of Vimeu, Abbeville and Amiens were famous.
While the Villeneuve d'Ascq conservatory orchard hosts the gene bank, others are developing, allowing varieties to be saved in their territory of origin, and also making it possible to mobilize local partners. The last (this is the sixteenth listed) has just opened in Amiens.
The apple remains the key to Pomexpo but the organizers allow themselves a look at other plant productions, which testify to the diversity of species. Everything that can be preserved and eaten will be valued.
In the vegetable department, the red bean from Abbeville, the turnip from Péronne, the bean from Soisson, take place alongside smoked garlic from Arleux, ingot from the North, carrot from Tilques and perhaps if there are any left. of the Capuchin beard.
The sanctuarization of heritage is not the only mission of the CRG, it also works to re-establish production and marketing channels for preserved species.
This edition celebrates Novafruit, a gathering of organic (apple) producers in the region. It is a new economic sector which is playing the game of the market so that its products are accessible to consumers.
Visitors can stock up on fruits and vegetables. A marquee adjacent to the exhibition hall will bring together 13 traders. If the apple harvest is considered to be rather weak this year, everyone will benefit.