Revitalising the French cutlery industry
At the beginning of the 20th century the cutlery industry - located along the banks of the Durolle River, which runs through the city of Thiers in France - employed approximately 5,000 to 6,000 cutlery artisans. Today this industry employs far fewer individuals, however, the French cutlery company TB Groupe has always had faith in the vitality of the French cutlery industry, which over the years has established the region’s wealth and helped establish its renowned reputation.
Kick-starting the French cutlery industry
As reported by Eric Tarrerias, TB Groupe’s CEO, in recent years a dynamic boom has been seen in the cutlery sector. This is certainly good news considering that the companies working in the knife production sector provide the majority of employment opportunities in the area surrounding the city of Thiers. Presently, TB Groupe employs a hundred employees.
In order to counter strong competition, especially from Asian countries, who offer low-cost and often low-quality cutlery products, Tarrerias-Bonjean decided to establish a well-defined and rigorous plan of action aimed at new growth. Its main goal was to revive the French cutlery industry.
This plan involved investing in the innovation of its products in order to offer its customers kitchen knives and cutlery items of irreproachable quality, which are strong, robust and have innovative designs.
The ultimate goal of this plan of action remains to offer quality French-made cutlery items at competitive prices on the national and international market. Currently 10% of TB’s profit is gained through global exports; therefore this plan is highly focused on increasing international sales. Presently, French authorities are working to revive French SMEs (small to medium-sized enterprises) and ETIs (intermediate-sized enterprises). This program is called French Fab and its principles are akin to those already practised by Tarrerias-Bonjean.
Investment and innovation
Investment and innovation are two of the major cornerstones of Tarrerias-Bonjean’s company philosophy.
Research and development
From 2016-2017, TB Groupe invested 7 million euros in research and development; this represents nearly a third of its annual profit. Part of this investment was dedicated to constructing a new warehouse with a surface of 6,000 m². This warehouse’s main function is preparing orders and overseeing logistics.
The goal was to offer clients optimal customer service when responding to their requests. Eric Tarrerias stated, "There is an increased interest in our French-made cutlery because of the great quality-price ratio. We provide this by taking into account the durability of the product, which is something buyers are looking for."
France’s leading cutlery manufacturer has a new storage site
This new building is used for storage and shipping. It is equipped with an automated system that prepares orders. This was a necessary and logical step for this French cutlery company to take to become competitive on a larger scale.
TB Groupe manufactures 100,000 to 150,000 items daily so introducing automated systems at the factory was a necessity. The next project was to install numerically controlled machines and a latest-generation forge that would produce large quantities of cutlery products.
Creation: the heart of TB Groupe cutlery company
In addition to its R&D department, the French cutlery company Tarrerias-Bonjean also relies heavily on the creative and artistic aspect of the kitchen knife manufacturing process.
An art director and a designer run this specialized department, which is responsible for creating designs for each year’s knife collections. This year’s latest models have already garnered success, including the Auguste knife collection and the professional-grade Maestro kitchen knives.
TB Groupe: the French cutlery manufacturer of tomorrow
Evercut®: latest-generation knives from the Made in France collection
TB’s Evercut® kitchen knives symbolise this French cutlery company’s innovative manufacturing processes. These kitchen knives have gained recognition since their debut on the market in 2010.
Evercut® is a major technological innovation, which is protected by two internationally recognized patents. It consists of laser-fusing titanium carbide (at 4,000 ° C) along the blade’s stainless steel cutting edge.
The resulting products have incomparably sharp blades that are 300 to 400 times stronger than those of the average kitchen knife.
TB Groupe’s kitchen knives are already renowned
The Evercut® kitchen knives have created a mini-revolution in the world of French cutlery.
This technology, invented by Tarrerias-Bonjean, has been given several international prizes, including Kitchen Innovation of the Year and European Consumer’s Choice Award.
On TB Groupe’s official e-shop you will find different several TB collections that benefit from the Evercut® technology, including:
- The Evercut® Origine paring knife
- The Evercut® Furtif chef’s knife
- The Evercut® Maestro chef’s knife
- The Evercut® Origine Santoku knife