Places to visit


windmillA few traditional windmills
have survived amid the fields of wheat and barley.

Cooler climate

At the north-east tip of France, Nord-Pas de Calais' farming has traditionally reflected its cooler climate, compared with the Mediterranean South.

Wheat & barley
Thanks to generally fertile soils overlying the chalk hills and valleys, the region's farmers produce some of France's highest cereal yields: wheat for
bread, and barley the raw material of beer.

Brewers can find all their ingredients locally. As well as barley, there's pure water from chalk wells and hops grown on warm hillsides.

Picture [left]: hops - a traditional crop of the Nord, grown to flavour beer.

Cattle and cheese

Clay soils in the river valleys make fertile pastures, ideal for dairy farming - producing some interesting local
cheeses, and a traditional supply of beef for the North's cooks.

The drained marshes of the coastal areas support market gardening, giving the region's cooks a profusion of vegetables, especially cooler climate varieties such as onions, garlic,
chicory, root vegetables and cauliflowers. Sugar beet is grown along the Belgian border.

The marshes also support pastures for fattening lambs that have been bred on the hills - a similar pattern to the traditional farming on Romney Marsh

1. Smoked garlic is a speciality of the Nord
2. Look out for stalls selling many varieties of garlic and onions in local markets


Places to visit:
Bommelaers Wall Ecomusée - Country Life Museum, Ghyvelde
Steenwerck Country Life Museum - near Bailleul

Related background information:
Local markets
Regional Specialities - eating & drinking
Snails - snail farms to visit




Regional dishes © Copyright 1999 Invicta Media Last updated 26th September 2000