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ILVO press release - Thursday, January 3, 2019

New EU project explores digital tools for agricultural advisors

Twenty-two research centers, agricultural practice & advisory centers and agro-interest organizations from 15 European countries will work together for the next 5 years to increase KNOWLEDGE and daily use of existing useful digital tools by the farmers themselves and agricultural consultants. This is done through the new European H2020 FAIRshare project launched in Dublin. Ireland, particularly the Irish research institute Teagasc, coordinates this project. FAIRshare stands for Farm Advisory digital Innovation tools Realized and Shared.

In Flanders three Agrolink Flanders partners participate: ILVO, Inagro and the Poultry Extension Research Center (Proefbedrijf Pluimvee). The other partner countries are France, the Netherlands, UK, Norway, Greece, Portugal, Hungary, Lithuania, Austria, Germany, Spain, Croatia and Switzerland.

Electronic data and communication technologies now offer the opportunity to make better and faster decisions at farm level. Europe thinks it is essential that advisors and farmers make the most of these tools. If not, the agricultural sector will eventually lag behind in the field of digitization and innovation.

Prof. dr. Tom Kelly (Teagasc), coordinator FAIRshare: "FAIRshare aims at two objectives. Firstly, we want to draw up an accessible online inventory of interesting available digital advice tools that can be used worldwide. It concerns all kinds of applications that function on the computer, smartphone or tablet, to help farmers with their business. Secondly, we want to create an ecosystem in which European consultants effectively get started with these digital tools."

FAIRshare is going to work very closely with the agricultural advisors. There are about 40 practical cases in which they actually learn to apply a specific tool in their own region and context. Through this learning experience, digitization in agriculture is sustainably stimulated.
The partners in Flanders are enthusiastic: "We are convinced that the use of digital tools by consultants will lead to better services for farmers themselves, and thus to more efficient and sustainable agriculture."

Kick off

More info

Kristine Piccart / Fleur Marchand (researchers ILVO), T +32 9 272 28 13, kristine.piccart@ilvo.vlaanderen.be, Fleur.Marchand@ilvo.vlaanderen.be

Isabelle Vuylsteke (livestock research INAGRO) M 0496 25 71 86, isabelle.vuylsteke@inagro.be
Johan Zoons (Head of Experimental Poultry Farm Yellow) M +32 478 45 51 36, Johan.Zoons@provincieantwerpen.be