Our history


A family and gourmet saga

It is to Auguste Pralus that we owe the Pralus house. It is also to him that we owe the invention of the famous Praluline® . This tasty brioche with pink pralines, ambassador of Maison Pralus since 1955, has made it famous in France and abroad!

Born in Mars, in the Loire, in 1920, Auguste Pralus opened his pastry shop in Roanne in 1948, with his wife Noëlie. This talented pastry chef obtained the much-coveted title of Meilleur Ouvrier de France in 1955, which he owes to his rigor and his demand for quality. The same year he created a brioche with pink pralines: Pralus + praline, it would be called Praluline !

Auguste Pralus will successively become president of the Union of Pastry Chefs, Member of the Culinary Academy of France, Knight of Arts, Sciences and Letters and finally, will be honored with the title of Knight of the National Order of Merit. In 2017, the city of Roanne paid tribute to him by naming an esplanade in his name.

Taken over in 1988 by his son François, the Roanne boutique still exists on rue du Général-de-Gaulle. Since then, Maison Pralus has developed and has a chocolate factory in Roanne. François Pralus also opened 18 other stores in France .

François Pralus: The cocoa adventurer

“As an intern at Bernachon, the idea came to me to make my own chocolate from the beans.” Born at the end of the seventies, the passion for cocoa has never left him. François Pralus is today an exceptional master chocolatier, one of the few in France to make his own chocolate, from bean to bar.

François Pralus works with dried beans from the best cocoa that he receives from all over the world, particularly from South America, Africa and the Indian Ocean. From these exceptional beans, it gives rise to around twenty 75% bars, a 100% pure criollo from Madagascar and a 45% milk chocolate. “I do everything myself,” explains François Pralus, “instead of sourcing from specialized suppliers. »

His passion led him to create his own cocoa plantation in Madagascar. 17 hectares of a variety of criollo, the first beans of which were harvested in 2012.
François Pralus gives us a little secret to get a clear idea of ​​the aromas of cocoa:
“I concoct a cocoa with water, a kind of herbal tea that I lightly sweeten and leave to decant. I can then get a clear idea of ​​the aromas before starting production. »

Our DNA in a few words

A prestigious history, a Roanne roots, preserved craftsmanship, recognized and rewarded quality, humanist values, a strong environmental awareness. Without forgetting unbridled creativity and cultivated good humor. This is how we could describe the Pralus house, a historic company well in its time. Constantly evolving, the Pralus house has grown in 75 years from a renowned Roanne pastry shop to a company with nearly 200 employees, operating in France and abroad. Today, 19 boutiques, the chocolate factory and a cocoa plantation in Madagascar are added to the historic patisserie of Roanne.

From father to son and today to grandsons, each generation has made its contribution, while maintaining the founding values. In developing the company, François Pralus strived to preserve a family spirit combined with the know-how and quality that earned him the recognition of his peers.

Homemade from A to Z

From the cocoa plantation to the chocolate bar, from the almond and hazelnut to the pink pralines, from the hive to the honey, from the hazelnut to the praline, from the raw bar to the Pyramid of the Tropics... homemade and know-how are the daily life of all Pralusians. Firstly in the laboratories where they perpetuate know-how and recipes inherited from decades of practice in pastry and confectionery. The safe gesture, in the scent of hot sugar or chocolate, we prepare cakes, we coat the pralines, we mold the bars, we make ganaches, pralines and chocolate candies. Each laboratory has its pastry chefs and the hand of man. In the workshops, machines help fold the tablets, which are then entrusted to the hands of our “Marmots”, as they are called here. Patiently and meticulously, they assemble the Pyramids of the Tropics, tie the raffia around the Infernal Bars, garnish and wrap the Easter items, prepare the boxes of sweets... destined to reach the shops where all the products made in our factory are presented by our sales teams. On site, the homemade process takes place before the eyes of customers in the Praluline workshop where our pastry chefs shape our famous pink praline brioche every morning.

Green consciousness

A preserved tradition is joined by a strong environmental awareness which took root on the plantation in Madagascar where François Pralus also cultivates the social aspect of sustainable development. The twenty planters, beyond having a job close to home, benefit from the school maintained nearby for their children and medical care when necessary.

In Roanne too, from year to year, developments are accompanied by reflection on the environmental impact.

A single site for employees

A permaculture garden

Business project initiated in 2017 by Hugo Pralus, the permaculture garden is intended to be both a green lung reclaimed from an industrial wasteland, a meeting and sharing place for employees, but also an educational tool.

The apiary

Around twenty hives produce golden Roanne honey scented with meadow flowers. The production complements that of the apiary installed for many years in the village of Mars, a few kilometers from our zero phyto town. We reserve this production for sale in pots. It can reach a good 800 kilos, which we happily share with our customers.

Renewable energy

On the product side, alongside the development of organic products, François Pralus has begun a vast reconsideration of packaging with the aim of obtaining 100% made in France, and without plastic, gradually abandoned in favor of recyclable materials.

Finally, a significant investment is dedicated to green energy: 750 photovoltaic panels installed on the roofs and behind the factory provide up to 30% of the site's consumption. For the rest of the consumption and the 19 stores, Maison Pralus chose a distributor of electricity from renewable energies, wind or solar.

The garden

Hugo and François Pralus proposed an innovative idea to the factory team: a garden allowing everyone to enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables, right at the doorstep of their workplace.

In spring 2017 in Roanne, the garden took shape and flourished on an industrial wasteland adjacent to the Manufacture. The chosen model: permaculture. An ecological and sustainable way where plants contribute to each other. The one hectare space has been planted with fruit trees and ornamental trees, the necessary humidity comes from the stream and the spring. Around twenty beehives have been placed in front of the large flowered meadow, a henhouse welcomes the farmyard and the pond for passing ducks...

At the beginning of May, we gather the first strawberries at break time... The bees quickly took over the space to produce up to 800 kilos of honey. The production of fruits, vegetables, fruit and eggs is distributed among employees. A friendly sharing around the large tables and benches provided for traditional weekend snacks.

Some people come to relax there on weekends with their families around the plancha or on the pétanque court!