Governance and organisation
As an agricultural cooperative, Triskalia does not operate in the same way as the average company, although it is subject to the same economic constraints. Its member farmers are shareholders, suppliers and customers, all at the same time.
Farmers in charge
As an agricultural cooperative, Triskalia’s governance functions around a Board of Directors made up of farmers from the four territorial divisions (départements) of Brittany, representing all forms of agricultural produce.
The President of the Cooperative is a farmer, elected by the Board of Directors. The Managing Director is an employee appointed by the Board of Directors.
The Cooperative’s strategy is defined by the Board of Directors, which then entrusts the management team with its implementation. The main strategic focuses of Triskalia are set out by board members in the company’s business plan, “2020 ensemble” [2020 together].
To ensure every geographic and agricultural sector is properly represented, the Cooperative’s life is organised around:
12 regional sections (4 in Finistère, 4 in Côtes-d’Armor, 3 in Morbihan and 1 in Ille-et-Vilaine)
8 specialist agricultural sections (dairy, cattle, pork, poultry, eggs, cereals, fresh vegetables, vegetables for industry) Specialist section councils takes place.
350 elected farmers, known as the section advisors, regularly take part in the various section council meetings held. There are also a number of commissions set up by the Board of Directors (animal nutrition, communications, Planète Positive, the co-op tomorrow, regional focus, etc.) A decentralised organisation ensures attentiveness and responsiveness in decision-making.
Likewise, when it comes to organising our staff, Brittany is divided into 6 sectors, headed by sector managers. They are responsible for applying the Cooperative’s general policy as adapted to the local context. Decentralised organisation also makes local staff management much easier.
Dominique Ciccone, Directeur Général
and Georges Galardon, Président de Triskalia.
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YES and NO! YES because, like any other business, it operates on an open, competitive market; it employs staff; it has to balance its books; and it needs to make a profit to invest. NO, because it is a partnership, with a style of governance established on the basis that “one person = one vote,” and its members are associates, producers, and clients all at once. This organisation is based on share capital held by farmers who invest in the company. The earnings are shared between members (in proportion to their stake in the Cooperative) and the Cooperative, which can thus continue to invest. However, there is no profit in the traditional sense. The Board of Directors, which defines the Group’s strategy, is made up of farmers elected by their peers at the general meeting of shareholders. This Board entrusts the Managing Director with the implementation of this strategy. Triskalia, like all cooperatives, aims to serve its members. The cooperative and its members make reciprocal and lasting commitments. The business model is democratic, founded on the principles of responsibility, solidarity, and transparency.
Can a cooperative leave its home region?
Through is shareholding base (member farmers), a cooperative is tied to its region. Its aim is to defend and raise the income of its member farmers, who, for Triskalia, come from the four départements of Brittany as well as bordering départements. In real terms, this means that the Cooperative’s head office and the core of its agricultural activity will never leave Brittany, and that its future is closely linked to that of the region. Nonetheless, with the development of a number of subsidiaries, which remain under the control of the cooperative parent company but have different legal statuses, Triskalia as a company will be able to process and market products outside Brittany and make a move into European and global markets.
We firmly believe so, since our concern for decentralisation, information, transparency and close relations with our member farmers means we are able to uphold our goals of fairness, democratic control (one member = one vote), participation and, of course, attentiveness to and respect for people. 350 section advisor farmers in the cooperative are elected at section assemblies (based on territories or sectors) and fully committed to representing the interests of the members to the best of their abilities in their respective territory or sector. Territorial and specialised section councils, which are held regularly, are therefore a permanent structure enabling the company to listen to its members’ needs and wishes.