Technical due diligence, design and Business Planning for organic orchard in France

GreenPods, a new generation agriculture startup, was conceived to introduce the production of high-value organic nuts to and in Europe. It has identified a potential farm in the South of France and required a consultancy firm with relevant experience to assess the potential of the project and its conversion into organic farming with almonds and large-scale irrigated crops.

The challenge

The client required a realistic and innovative development plan to initiate production of organic almonds and to deliver an operations’ plan fulfilling the necessary requirements for organic and regenerative agriculture certification. The objective was to utilise and build-up the available assets from an historical corn farm and to convert them to innovative and sustainable agriculture.

FGM results

After confirming the technical capacity of the identified investment opportunity to Greenpods, the FGM team undertook a comprehensive benchmark analysis of organic almond production worldwide and updated the Business Plan in order for the client to raise funds for the project.

Site assessment preparation

FGM optimised the effectiveness of the site mission by thoroughly preparing the investigation prior to going on site. This included:

  • Clarification of the overall project strategy with a special focus on the specific farming model: organic production, ecological practices and low carbon emissions,
  • Investigation of current systems of hazelnut and almond production in the South of France, Spain and California including density options and irrigation methods,
  • Preliminary review of the Business Plan,
  • Collection of agronomic and technical data for the existing farm.
A visited organic hazelnut production project

A visited organic hazelnut production project

On-site assessment

  • Review available land and soil quality to classify those adapted for perennial crops (almond trees) and those for large-scale crops (soya, sunflower, barley, wheat, alfalfa),
  • Assessment of water availability and irrigation assets in place,
  • Collection and analysis of other technical data: climate, soil analysis,
  • Review of farming equipment fleet and operating infrastructure.
Assessment of irrigated organic corn field to be converted into an orchard

Assessment of irrigated organic corn field to be converted into an orchard

Technical due diligence report

  • FGM findings and recommendations were compiled in a technical due diligence report including a comprehensive review of all technical and agronomic aspects
  • Key factors for success and potential issues or bottlenecks to be solved were highlighted to encourage investment in the project.
  • Advice was given regarding possible price levels of the farm (value of land, assets and infrastructure)

Operations plan and business Plan update

  • Preparation of crop mix, rotation plan and crop husbandry plans,
  • Initial farm design with list of equipment, infrastructure,
  • OpEx and CapEx estimates for perennial and annual crops,
  • Update of technical and economic assumptions of the Business Plan.

Provided services in the frame of this project

Interesting reading relevant to this project



Number of experts

4 experts




6 Month


170 ha



Assigned competencies

  • Agro-economist
  • Agronomist
  • Organic Production Expert
  • Nut Production Expert

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