With the increasing health concerns of consumers in recent years, production processes of agricultural products have become more important. It has also become a strict necessity for farmers to keep track of their production processes in order to increase quality, effectiveness of their production and sell their products more reasonable prices. This issue is regarded as critical especially for farmers who are engaged in good agricultural practices, organic farming and selling their products to the exporter enterprises. On the other hand, traceability of agricultural products is also a problematic issue for agricultural consultants since they need to keep track of many farmers’ production processes.
Aegean Exporters' Association - TurkeyLead applicant
Izmir Konak Chamber of Agriculture - TurkeyInitiative partner
İzmir Directorate of Provincial Food Agriculture and Livestock - TurkeyInitiative partner
Ege University - TurkeyInitiative partner
The Farm2Fork Food Traceability Infrastructure has been established for farmers, agricultural consultants, food processing enterprises and exporters to record and trace their all processes in electronic environment. This infrastructure has been established in Izmir / Turkey with technical team including academicians, employees in agricultural enterprises, experts of process analysis, experts from associations, agricultural consultants etc.
The Farm2Fork Food Traceability Infrastructure has been established for farmers, agricultural consultants, food processing enterprises and exporters to record and trace their processes in an electronic environment. This user-friendly infrastructure has been established in Izmir with a technical team. The Farm2Fork Food Traceability Infrastructure has been designed as two separate but integrated modules as the farm module and agri-business module.
Farm Module enables the online recording of all production processes occurring at the farm. It can be utilized by agribusiness, consultants or individual farmers
Agri-business Module is the second part of the system that provides the traceability of products within an enterprise.
The developed system is very well adapted to Mediterranean conditions: is web-based and easy to use and to manage, allow entry of dispersed small plots belonging to one farmer, enter all inputs used and all practices, provide conversions that help the low-educated farmer to understand the applied practices and help to calculate gross margin. The developed system can be easily integrated to quality assurance systems applied either at farm level as GAP, organic or at the other end, at the agri-business level e.g. packers, processors. It can be replicated or modified to different climatic conditions or countries. The only limitation could be for older farmers who are computer illiterate. However for young farmers it is innovative and appealing.
The infrastructure has 2 main modules integrated with each other; farm module and agri-business module. The farm module has been designed for 5 different agricultural production areas. In the farm infrastructure, all production processes, tests and analysis, revenue and expenses can be recorded and traced back and all types of records can be reported and analysed via reporting function. Farmers started to use this module and agricultural consultants in the Aegean Region. In order to extend the use of this module development of mobile applications has been started and a partnership structure will be formed with one of the GSM operators in Turkey. Agri-business module is flexible and tailor made infrastructure for food processing enterprises use . In this module, all processes in the enterprises are recorded via PDAs. Pilot installations have been finalized in 2 enterprises. Fresh or dried fruit and vegetable sector is the main target taking into consideration that EU is the main market.
Farmers, agricultural consultants, agricultural product processing facilities and businesses, wholesalers, retailers, agricultural product exporters, consumers, companies, producers.
Above all, main beneficiaries are consumers in Turkey and EU that can trace all the production process and can easily find information on pesticides, nitrogen etc. that the farmer used in the field.
Technicians and operators benefit from the Agri-business Module - second part of the system that provides the traceability of products within an enterprise. All the operations occurring in the enterprise can be recorded and traced with hand-held mobile terminals.
Human resources involved in the project included 1 project staff from AEA (Aegean Exporters’ Association) Miray Sanli (project expert). Researchers and professors from Ege University and Public Authority gave inputs regarding the processes in fruit, vegetable, greenhouse, field-crops and grape production.
Lack of electronic infrastructures to establish traceability makes the issue even more difficult. The education levels of farmers and low awareness on pesticide use result in some residue problems in agricultural products and make difficult to reach quality standards necessary for retail and export market.
On the agri-business side, lack of electronic based infrastructures result in poor traceability of agricultural products used as raw matter in the enterprises. Those electronic infrastructures should combine and integrate production in the farms and processing in the enterprises in order to provide full traceability from farm to fork. From this viewpoint, Aegean Exporters’ Associations has developed a traceability system for agricultural products which enables online recording of production processes at the farm and provides full traceability of agricultural products throughout the chain in agri-business. The system provides an integrated solution.
Traceability system helps to record all practices. Recorded data helps better farm managment. Taking precautions for possible diseases and pests helps to reduce pesticide use and prevent environment and the final product contamination. Automatic calculations and conversion rates optimizes fertilizer use and decreases environmental contamination by reducing leakage. Soil or plant analyses reports amount state of individual nutritive elements. Even if the amount of fertilizer is applied as a compound fertilizer e.g. NH4NO3 the system calculates as N and helps the farmer to compare these levels with the recommendations based upon analyses. Additionally, gross margin a basic economic analysis is calculated by just pushing a button. If the farmer sees all expenses and revenues as a whole, he will consider all inputs as well as practices. Therefore it is expected that unnecessary soil tillage will be reduced and contribute to environment by promoting soil fertility.
Easy recording of all operations during production
Removes the paperwork burden with enabling the entrance of records via computers
Tests and analysis information can be stored in the computers
Provides the easy calculation of production costs
Provides the sample reports for all types of records
Provides the easy calculation of production costs
Establishes the full traceability of organic products in electronic environment
Provides a competitive advantage by building trust among consumers
Improves the effectiveness of enterprise management
Can be easily integrated to Enterprise Resource Planning systems
Since the system has 2 modules, it is more sustainable and can be adopted separately, integrated to the existing traceability system present in an enterprise or by adoption of both modules. It targets 5 different groups of plant production as open field, protected cultivation. It can be used for conventional, GAP or organic production systems.
1 Food Safety Process Analysis Report
1 internet based traceability system
Training module for agriculture engineers
1 project web site : www.gidaizle.org
100 pieces in 3 different designs, total of 300 sheets of banner
2000 pieces brochures
3 pieces roll-ups in 3 different designs
1 project opening meeting
1 project closing meeting