By Lucie Roth
History has learned that a Lanouaillais was at the origin of the discovery of limousine kaolin veins, a raw material of fame. Limoges porcelain. It is in any case the version which circulates at the porcelain maker MP Samie, whose national warehouse is located Jumilhac-le-Grand, a stone’s throw from its production plant in Saint-Yrieix-la-Perche, in the neighboring department of Haute-Vienne.
Today belonging to the very tight club of nine IGP Porcelaine de Limoges producers, Roland Samie was a porcelain decorator, then a wholesaler and importer in his early days. It was in 2014 that MP Samie porcelains relocated their production to Saint-Yrieix-la-Perche, thanks to a state-of-the-art robotic factory, which required an investment of € 4 million.
95% automated production
“ There are two machines like this in France », Explains Olivier Samie, general manager of the company and son of Roland and Marie-Paule, the founders. Their robot makes it possible to produce four oven dishes in 130 seconds.
” It would take a quarter of an hour to produce one by hand casting, and with the risk of deformation. The factory may be automated, but it follows traditional porcelain manufacturing processes.
Today, 95% of Samie’s production is carried out using robotics and 5% by hand, mainly for artistic pieces.
We still cast some parts by hand, the old-fashioned way, but it’s not possible to do everything like that.
Search for new markets
50% of MP Samie’s production is usually intended for the hotel and catering industry. ” We supply Courtepaille or Pataterie chains. For a year, it’s complicated … “
The company saw its turnover plunge from € 2.5 million to € 1.7 million between 2019 and 2020. Usually, between 15 and 20 t of porcelain leave the warehouse in Jumilhac every week. ” At the moment, we are barely doing 10 », Deplores Roland Samie. With the curfew, store sales are stalling.
Pending a recovery in the catering sector ” for which we have great concerns », We have to look for new markets. The possibility of collaboration with hospitals is currently being studied. An innovative plate designed entirely in France and whose porcelain part is made by MP Samie will soon be used by a large group in its hotels.
Article to be found in full in the March 19 edition of Réussir le Périgord