SBM steps in to help drought-stricken Domaine d’Agerbol farm in Roquebrune Cap Martin 

domaine d'agerbol

For over a decade, the Domaine d’Agerbol has been growing the organic fruit and vegetables that fill the menus of Monaco’s most celebrated restaurants, but the ongoing drought is threatening its future.  

At the height of summer, Anna Ferrari, the owner of the Domaine d’Agerbol, put out a desperate call for help. Her farm, which she runs with husband Virginio, has been struggling due to the prolonged drought that has brought on fierce water restrictions across the region.  

The drought has depleted essential water sources coming down from Mont Agel and natural irrigation systems have been seriously disrupted as best, and halted completely at worst.  

By early August, the issues brought on by water scarcity had reached fever pitch for the Ferraris and their Domaine d’Agerbol, which provides fresh and seasonal produce for many of the chefs of Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer’s (SBM) restaurants in the Principality, including the Group’s flagship organic eatery Elsa.  

The commune of Roquebrune Cap Martin agreed to connect the farm to its municipal water network following the Ferraris request, but the natural topography of the Domaine d’Agerbol, which is found at between 430 and 490 metres above sea level, meant that much of the land was still extremely dry.  

Ultimately, the solution of an onsite reservoir and pumping system was far too expensive for the farm to bear alone, and the Domaine d’Agerbol needed additional help.  

Financial aid and assistance came, and gladly, from SBM, who decided to take swift action “without hesitation” to support the farm that has served the Group well over the years.  

domaine d'agerbol
SBM’s Stéphane Valeri, centre, and other high-level management visited the farm in September. Photo credit: SBM

An official statement from the Group tells of how the “management of Monte-Carlo Beach alerted the Group” to the plight of the Domaine d’Agerbol, leading to a top-level decision to provide the investment required to secure the long-term prosperity of the faarm as well as provide a more sustainable solution than using up vital drinking water reserves.  

In late September, SBM’s President-Delegate Stéphane Valeri and Secretary-General Virginie Cotta headed up to the farm to reaffirm their support of the Domaine d’Agerbol and promote the sourcing of locally grown produce. 


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Main photo credit: Domaine d’Agerbol