The Domaine du Merle, located in Salon-de-Provence — the only Montpellier SupAgro establishment in the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur region — is a teaching and experimental platform specialized in transhumant sheep breeding, irrigation and water management, and production of Crau PDO hay.
Missions: produce, train, experiment, promote & host
The "Merle 2020" project supports agro-ecological transition, serving students, researchers and socioeconomic actors such as businesses, farmers and local authorities. Its activities include:
Main teaching activities
With research and higher education institutes AgroParisTech, CIRAD, CNRS, INRAE, IRD and the Universities of Aix-Marseille and Avignon within the joint research units CEREGE, EMMAH, G-EAU, IMBE, LISAH, SELMET and numerous socio-economic partners.
Services for professionals
• Staff: 12 agents including 9 from Montpellier SupAgro and 3 from INRAE
• Utilized agricultural area: 400 hectares, including 142 ha of irrigated meadows and 230 ha of coussouls, or arid steppes (National Nature Reserve of Crau Coussouls)
• Livestock: 1 500 Mérinos d’Arles ewes
• Production of PDO Crau hay: 1,100 tons of which 1,000 sold
• Internship hours: 25,000 hours/year
• Budget: €720,000 of which €580,000 (revenue Domaine) and €140,000 (revenue training)
Domaine et Centre de Formation du Merle