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Anne Rigaud : A 100% organic volunteer agronomist!

Actu - Portrait bénévole Anne Rigaud

After an agricultural engineering degree in France and a farming apprenticeship with the AMAP—the French equivalent of our family farmers—Anne Rigaud wanted to learn more. The idea of combining a trip with an internship to explore farming in Quebec quickly took shape after a quick web search and an initial contact with Équiterre, who was offering an internship for the following season.

Anne arrived at Équiterre in October 2014, where a new professional experience awaited her. There were many adaptations to be made: not only was the culture different from what she knew in France, but so was the environment, both in the fields and in the schedule of day-to-day living (as she’s fond of pointing out!).

Anne joined the local organic food team, working on various initiatives to support farmers and increase consumer awareness. Several times a day, she answers that famous question, “How do the organic baskets work?”

Anne is also involved in various other preparations for the new season. These include updating farm profiles, coordinating logistics for information booths and even promoting the new campaign with the media. She has also taken on the paniersbio.org website and is improving other logistic platforms. These tasks put Anne in direct contact with growers, allowing her to learn much about our mission and the challenges and issues of organic farming in Quebec.

After her internship with Équiterre, Anne plans to volunteer for other organizations to learn more about organic farming and the Quebec market. She’s already taken a beekeeping course and now wants to learn about short food supply chains, such as neighbourhood markets. By broadening her skills, she hopes to support farming initiatives back in France.

What has she enjoyed most at Équiterre? Other than the work environment, Anne thinks Équiterre’s variety of action areas is brilliant and she loves how team members complement each other. “It clicks. Équiterre has managed to create something really special, with something for everyone. It makes me want to stay and it was totally worth the effort just to experience their work first hand!”