Open field processing tomato is a major crop in the South of the European Union. This industry must however remain competitive by adapting itself to the constraints of the new Common Agricultural Policy.
For that reason, in agreement with the call for proposals and in particular areas 4.1.1 and 4.2.2, the finalised aim of the proposed project is to give farmers the tools and methods to reason the crop management in the different European conditions by satisfying all of the following objectives: to produce raw materials of a good hygiene quality (absence of compounds harmful to health) and of good technological quality (dry matter content, pH ... ), to preserve the environment (by minimising the use of chemicals for crop protection and the release of nitrates) I to redu ce costs.
The proposed study corresponds to the construction of technical itineraries to grow open field tomatoes based on eco-physiological models. We call technical itinerary (TI), the reasoning leading to the application of techniques in order to obtain a production corresponding to given constraints, and physical and social-economical objectives (climate/quality of the environment, finished products/costs ... ). The aim is to construct TI (technical itineraries called TI1) on the basis of existing eco-physiological models (numerous modelisation studies have been based on tomatoes) and to test TI1 experimentally. TI1 will be tested in two different ways in the various research locations. The first will be the observation of the crop to ascertain whether the anticipated behaviour of the surroundings and the canopy are realised. The other will compare the performance of TI1 to the current technical knowledge by setting up the technical itinerary of a local expert in each location (TI2) . In TI2, the behaviour of the field itself will also be observed. Some reasoning considered relevant in TI2 could then be introduced in TI1.
Thus, in the various research location, two technical itineraries TI1 and TI2 will be constructed and experimented according to the local constraints, with the airn of obtaining, for example 70 t/ha of tomatoes for the production of paste, with a dry matter content of 5.25%, with as little pesticides, residues of pesticides and nitrates, and with as much respect of the environment as possible. Tli will be constructed from existing models of the functioning of the surroundings and the tomato canopy itself and from indicators of the state of the surroundings and the canopy. TI2 will be based on local expertise in each location. Observations will be made at various stages of the crop to explain the results. Pesticide residues and nitrate ions levels will particularly be studied. The work will be performed by 6 scientific partners from 5 countries, operating in 11 locations which represent a sufficiently wide range of conditions of the main areas of production in E.U. This will improve the necessary knowledge for defining the diversity of situations encountered. The partners have participated as a co-ordinated network to a CEE-CAMAR project from 1991 to 1994. This programme aimed at improving the technological quality of processing tomatoes. The results from that project will directly be used in the proposed project. The scientific content of this project will be closely co-ordinated, partly through real time contact through a computer network. The results will be processed and published jointly in scientific journals under the control of the scientific coordinator. They should be useful to model the functioning of open field crops which is particularly necessary for integrated pest management. This knowledge could be used to develop quantitative models in the form of a decisionmaking software.
The overall co-ordinator, who represents processors from the Mediterranean Basin, will disseminate the results through the organisation of Symposia. Moreover, the most directly applicable results will easily be transmitted in the producing areas by the partners of the project in order to Produce healthy tomatoes, at low cost and with respect of the environment
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
43016 San Pancrazio Parma
81015 Piana Di Monte Verna Caserta
141 23 Lycovrissi - Athens