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Main research question/goal
Internet of Food and Farm 2020 (IoF2020) is a 4-year Horizon2020 project with over 70 partners from 16 countries. For this innovation project Europe has dedicated € 30 million to enhance the sustainability and productivity of the agro-food sector.  In the project 19 use cases will be set up in 5 sectors (arable, dairy, fruit, vegetables and meat). During the project there will also be an open call to attract new technologies and use cases. ILVO, one of the lead partners in IoF2020, coordinates two use cases: one on tracking dairy cows on pasture together with Sensolus and INAGRO; and one on the optimization of pig farm management together with Porphyrio, VION (NL), ZLTO (NL) and ISMB (IT). Because of ILVO’s leadership rolein this prestigious project, the transformation of agriculture and food into smart networks of connected objects will also happen in the region of Flanders. The starting point of IoF2020 is that many isolated digital machines and sensors are popping up in European agriculture has but larger, smarter networks and data-exchange between these machines are needed to create new added value.

Research approach
ILVO helps transform and scale-up validated technologies to bring them closer to a market introduction in the food and agricultural sector. This will occur through a multi-actor and participative approach using in smaller groups focused on a specific application or use case. A use case typically contains a research center, technology producers and critical end-users from the agro-food sector. In one use case ILVO works together with Porphyrio (BE), VION (NL), ZLTO (NL) and ISMB (IT) on the added value data and data-linkage can bring on a pig farm, with goals like the detection of problems in the pens, the reduction of boar taint and the support of another use case on traceability. In a second use case the partners (ILVO, Sensolus and Inagro) aim for the monitoring of grazing of dairy cows. How many days and hours a cow is grazing on pasture cannot really be measured automatically up to now. As a leading partner in IoF2020, ILVO is also coordinating the work package that contains all the use cases, together with Biosense (Serbia).

The researchers expect that through IoF2020 smart networks of connected objects that can be identified, monitored and controlled from a distance will be applied and validated on a large scale and in real-life circumstances in the agro-food chain. Internet of Things (IoT) can for example be used to optimize the quality of meat whilst minimizing the possibilities for fraud through transparency and traceability. Another example is in potato farming, where IoT sensors can ensure that the status of the soil, the plants and the climate are monitored continuously and that the collected data can thus be used for better predictions and management decisions.

The researchers also expect a great deal of work to be done to adapt existing technologies from other sectors to the needs of the farms and food processors of the future, the needs of the whole value chain and more specifically also the consumers. The 70+ partners aim for nothing less than a paradigm shift in the way food is produced in Europe, from the field to the plate, to enhance the competitiveness and excellence of Europe in this domain.

Funding provider(s)
EU H2020
Wageningen UR

External partner(s)
Biosense institute - research and devolopment institute for information technologies in biosystems
Contextwise BVBA
VION Food Group
Zuidelijke Land and Tuinbouw Organisatie
Effective start/end date1/01/1731/03/21

ID: 5029666