Tracing produce upgrades agriculture
With agriculture representing a major component within the EU's economy, governments and policymakers have struggled to establish an effective system that monitors produce and traces it to its source. In response, the EU-funded project 'GeoTraceability Integrated System for Common Agricultural Policy' (GTIS CAP) established a data resource to fill the gap. This new integrated information system was established for stakeholders in charge of the EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and for producers to control the supply chain. It combined remote sensing data with information from the EU's Integrated Administration and Control System (IACS) and Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS). The project defined clear geo-traceability indicators provided by satellite images to help control the CAP and outlined standards for interoperability of IACS/LPIS geo-referenced data. Project partners also took part in 14 technical traceability conferences in Europe, in addition to organising a workshop with key players. Subsequently, the project's work focused on implementing and validating the system in two test regions in Belgium and France to produce recommendations for European and national administrative bodies. It also examined European and regional regulations related to the protection of the environment and encouragement of good agricultural practices. Following on from the research, the establishment of the project website features web-based services based on geo-identification, enabling rapid exchange of traceability data among various European countries. In addition to traceability, the established network also provided data on certification and quality of products. The prototypes for both areas were finally established, opening the door to sophisticated web-based systems that will support the CAP, as well as consumers and producers in many different ways.