Know more

About cookies

What is a "cookie"?

A "cookie" is a piece of information, usually small and identified by a name, which may be sent to your browser by a website you are visiting. Your web browser will store it for a period of time, and send it back to the web server each time you log on again.

Different types of cookies are placed on the sites:

  • Cookies strictly necessary for the proper functioning of the site
  • Cookies deposited by third party sites to improve the interactivity of the site, to collect statistics

Learn more about cookies and how they work

The different types of cookies used on this site

Cookies strictly necessary for the site to function

These cookies allow the main services of the site to function optimally. You can technically block them using your browser settings but your experience on the site may be degraded.

Furthermore, you have the possibility of opposing the use of audience measurement tracers strictly necessary for the functioning and current administration of the website in the cookie management window accessible via the link located in the footer of the site.

Technical cookies

Name of the cookie


Shelf life

CAS and PHP session cookies

Login credentials, session security



Saving your cookie consent choices

12 months

Audience measurement cookies (AT Internet)

Name of the cookie


Shelf life


Trace the visitor's route in order to establish visit statistics.

13 months


Store the anonymous ID of the visitor who starts the first time he visits the site

13 months


Identify the numbers (unique identifiers of a site) seen by the visitor and store the visitor's identifiers.

13 months

About the AT Internet audience measurement tool :

AT Internet's audience measurement tool Analytics is deployed on this site in order to obtain information on visitors' navigation and to improve its use.

The French data protection authority (CNIL) has granted an exemption to AT Internet's Web Analytics cookie. This tool is thus exempt from the collection of the Internet user's consent with regard to the deposit of analytics cookies. However, you can refuse the deposit of these cookies via the cookie management panel.

Good to know:

  • The data collected are not cross-checked with other processing operations
  • The deposited cookie is only used to produce anonymous statistics
  • The cookie does not allow the user's navigation on other sites to be tracked.

Third party cookies to improve the interactivity of the site

This site relies on certain services provided by third parties which allow :

  • to offer interactive content;
  • improve usability and facilitate the sharing of content on social networks;
  • view videos and animated presentations directly on our website;
  • protect form entries from robots;
  • monitor the performance of the site.

These third parties will collect and use your browsing data for their own purposes.

How to accept or reject cookies

When you start browsing an eZpublish site, the appearance of the "cookies" banner allows you to accept or refuse all the cookies we use. This banner will be displayed as long as you have not made a choice, even if you are browsing on another page of the site.

You can change your choices at any time by clicking on the "Cookie Management" link.

You can manage these cookies in your browser. Here are the procedures to follow: Firefox; Chrome; Explorer; Safari; Opera

For more information about the cookies we use, you can contact INRAE's Data Protection Officer by email at or by post at :


24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

Menu Logo Principal Logo partenaire


Understanding the determinants of the corn-bean association

Contrary to natural and human selection, which has acted for millennia in a context of multi-species assembly, modern agriculture has minimized interactions between species by practicing mono-species cultivation. Thus, the cultivation of maize and beans in association was almost abandoned in France during the 20th century, but has recently been revived locally.

Full project title: Understanding the determinants of the maize-bean association: agricultural practices, soil-plant interactions, nutrition. Project acronym: Co-culture.

Funded under the Call for Emergence 2016, the CoCulture project took place over 2 years (2017-2018)

Project leader: Maud TENAILLON (GQE-Le Moulon) Other people from this laboratory involved: L.Matthieu, J. Enjalbert, H. Corti, D. Manicacci


  • academic :
    • in BASC: UMR Agronomie, Grignon (M-H Jeuffroy)
    • Outside BASC: UMR Ecologie Microbienne Lyon (T. Trabac, D. Muller, Y. Moënne-Loccoz); UE du maïs, Saint-Martin-de-Hinx (C. Palafre, B. Lagardère); LISST-CAS; UMR Sol Agro hydrosytèmes Spatialisation, Rennes (V. Parnaudeau, E. Le Cadre).
  • non-academic: Memento association, Toulouse (M. Carraretto)
Traditional crop system in the Americas Coculture

The cultivation of maize and bean in association could benefit from the biological partnership between these two species through complementation and/or facilitation processes, in particular via the uptake of atmospheric nitrogen by the bean, which is possible thanks to a rhizospheric bacterial symbiosis. Despite the potentially interesting synergies between these species, no study has been done to describe the benefits of their association in cultivation. The aim of our project was to understand the functioning of this bispecific association in the case of Tarbais bean.

Maize-Bean intercropping in French Tarbais

Species synergies allowing a more optimal sharing of resources could be at the origin of an increased yield in crops of species in association compared to monospecific crops, under low input conditions. Other benefits, such as improved competitiveness of associations against weeds, which reduces the need for herbicide treatments, and increased ecosystem services, could be mobilized. The challenge is to promote less input-intensive and more sustainable farming systems.

Seven farms in the Tarbes region were included in our study. We conducted interviews and took samples from plots of mono-specific crops (bean or corn) and associated crops: samples of "bare" soil and rhizospheric soil adhering to the roots to characterize bacterial assemblages, and samples of plants to analyze yield and nitrogen and carbon nutrition.


  • Coculture Photo
    Interviews with farmers
    . The maize-bean combination is a traditional system that has been recently reintroduced. The Tarbais variety is used for beans, while for maize several rarely traditional varieties are chosen for their strong stalks and late flowering.
  • Differences between intercropping (CA) and monospecific cropping (CM). In maize, vegetative biomass is higher in CA than in CM. In beans, grain size is larger but yield is lower in CA than in CM. Competition for grain production and carbon nutrition is observed between species. As for bacterial assemblages, the effect of CA/CM and cultural practices (farms) were significant on the qualitative composition of bacterial communities associated with roots.

Thanks to this project, we have been contacted to participate in a European H2020 project entitled "Intelligent Collections of Food Legumes Genetic Resources for European Agrofood Systems" which started last May. This project focuses on the description and conservation of European legumes, with a specific focus on the maize-bean association.

Our study revealed more competition than synergy between the two species. However, neither the growing conditions nor the choice of varieties were reasoned for this association; they were transferred from modern agricultural systems to be applied to a traditional agrosystem that was recently re-adopted. Through a thesis, we will seek to describe the genetic and phenotypic diversity of local maize and bean varieties collected in traditional European systems that have persisted (Romania and Italy), and compare the success of existing associations with those formed randomly to search for traces of coevolution between the two species and their genetic determinants.

CCL Coculture

The researcher explains the RESULTS in VIDEO (LabEx BASC scientific days, February 4, 2021)