The European Commission launched on 19 April 2016 the first industry-related initiative of the Digital Single Market package. Building on and complementing the various national initiatives for digitising industry, the Commission will act to trigger further investments in the digitisation of industry and support the creation of better framework conditions for the digital industrial revolution. One of the more important pillars of the Digitise European Industry effort is the activity to develop a network of Digital Innovation Hubs (DIH).
Digital Innovation Hubs Agrifood
SmartAgriHubs is a project of the European Union (Horizon 2020) connecting the dots to unleash the innovation potential for digital transformation of the European agri-food sector.
There is a strong connection between the TRACK partners and some Digital Innovation Hubs.
If you want to foster your digital work frames and you need some help find your way to one of our Digital Innovation Hubs.
Overview of Digital Innovation Hubs Agrifood
Since 2005, VEGEPOLYS is the main French Cluster dedicated to plant production, with a national outreach and a local attachment in several regions: Pays de la Loire, Centre, Bretagne, Auvergne-Rhônes Alpes.
Its goal is to gather leading universities, expert research laboratories and innovative companies (420 members in 2018), to support producers and agriculture-related companies and to help them inventing sustainable production models for tomorrow.
In order to reach this goal, new technologies applied to agriculture are a corner stone and this is why we perform an active watch and support to AgTech companies.
At the European level, VEGEPOLYS is active, notably these days as Digital Innovation Hub within the SmartAgriHub project. Indeed, Vegepolys is not only an active partner of the project but is also directly involved into one of the French Flagship Innovation Experiment: AgrifarmLab. This SME contest is going to gather farmers and AgTech companies in order to test and improve smart solutions for agriculture.
Transilvania Digital Innovation Hub is an initiative developed by iTech Transilvania cluster by ARIES T in collaboration with several relevant stakeholders in the region. Transilvania Digital Innovation Hub mission is to identify collaborative projects for digitalisation of all the relevant stakeholders such as: companies, clusters that activate in various areas (creative industries, agriculture, furniture, energy efficiency and agriculture), research institutes and software companies, public authorities, Universities. For all the interested parts, our objective is to stimulate technological innovative capabilities in order to support them delivering the products/services in the European Digital Single Market. With more than 1300 IT companies, 12 universities and 100 000 students, Cluj is considered a strong regional IT pole, the second after the capital, Bucharest. The development of this digitization initiative in Cluj region represents a first step in supporting an efficient technological development and mapping the city on the European catalogue/map of digitization.
More information: http://goo.gl/N5G4qe
DIH-Clust-ER Emilia-Romagna acts as a regional Digital Innovation Hub because Italy is lagging behind in terms of accessibility of ICT solutions for agrifood companies. To date only 1% of Italian farmers use precision farming and the government’s objective of 10% of all farms being equipped by 2021 seems a very challenging one indeed. Addressing that challenge is complex; Italian farm operations are very fragmented and specialised; 63% of fields have less than 5ha for an average of 11ha (against an average of 16ha for the EU and 60 ha in France); 77% of families living on a farm have no access to internet. However the country and specifically the Emilia-Romagna (ER) region has strengths that can be built upon; for example ER is the 3rd agricultural machinery manufacturer world-wide; so its machine could be easily fitted with the ICT solutions needed by the farmers. In addition, the Emilia-Romagna region offers a high concentration of labs and other solution providers in the so-called agriculture- and manufacturing-4.0. To help rationalise that offering and simplify the identification of tailored answers to its members’ needs, the Agrifood Clust-ER acts as a regional Digital Innovation Hub, in the sense that:
- It is the first contact point for the digitization of the agrifood ecosystem in the region;
- It has set up a number of roundtables and focus groups that deal with the challenges and opportunities brought by digitization; amongst others the Sustainable Agriculture Value Chain which specifically deals with precision farming and the regional Big Data and Traceability Platform;
- It is in the process of formalising a network of “DemoFarms” where regional companies can test various IoT solutions for themselves and assess which ones are suitable to their own situation.
The Clust-ER is currently establishing a network of demonstration farms in various agrifood sectors; it will connect between them existing demo sites that currently operate in isolation; the ASTRA (Agenzia per la Sperimentazione Tecnologica e la Ricerca Agroambientale)/CPRV 4 test locations for crop production; the University of Bologna Department of Veterinary and CRPA demonstration sites for animal production and the Goro/Comacchio demonstration farm for aquaculture. By the end of 2019 that network will be operational with regional companies able to book slots of time for demonstration and training centrally with Clust-ER.
The Digital Innovation Hub (DIH) Andalucía Agrotech is an ecosystem created to help companies in the digitization process of the agri-food sector. This hub gathers the needs of the agri-food sector, technological services provided by ICT companies, the innovation capacity of knowledge agents and public programmes promoted by the public administration to provide support. The DIH Andalucía Agrotech has been designed to be an instrument to speed-up the implementation of digitization in the agri-food value chain and to provide, in the first phase, the necessary training.
We are all aware that Internet and new digital technologies are changing the way we interact and do business. Therefore, the agri-food sector and its value chain must also take part in this digital transformation to remain on the markets and to contribute new solutions to the challenges that the agri-food sector faces.
The experience of the sector in the incorporation of innovation is a good starting point but it is necessary to support this process using the DIH Andalucía Agrotech in order to share experiences, incorporate knowledge, promote demonstration or favour the implementation of new work models. The dimension of the agri-food sector in Andalusia, with 300,000 farms and 5,400 agri-food industries and with a wide diversity of productions, makes necessary to look for digital solutions adapted to the characteristics and structure of this sector.
The DIH Andalucía Agrotech is a centre of activity to create, anticipate and channel digital innovation in the agri-food sector, that provides the best conditions to enable sector companies achieve business success in the long-term.
Greenport Horti Campus: The Digital Innovation Hub for Agrifood is part of the Greenport Horti Campus. This campus is the Research, Innovation and Education Ecosystem of the Greenport West-Holland. The Greenport is a regional triple helix cluster. Focus of the Digital Innovation Hub is to develop an innovation ecosystem to Digitize greenhouse horticulture systems and the value chain especially on cyber security and acceptation of data sharing. Stakeholders of the Greenport West-Holland support network development and innovation activities via a special Innovation Pact.
Examples of joined activities are conferences, master classes, courses and co-creative and co-innovation projects. All the activities aim to stimulate collaboration between universities, vocational schools and companies preferably on a global scale and stimulates cross-overs and the connection between students and business and support them to innovate. A nice cross-over example, is the activity of the Big Data lecturer and researcher Amora Amir of the technical faculty of Inholland university of applied sciences. Amora develops new greenhouse lab (Ideal Research Greenhouse Lab) invested with new recent technologies.
Ideal Research Lab is subsidised form European project EFRO Evergreen Greenport Noord Holland Noord. The aim of this facility is studying the plant through data and let the green finger students work together with technical students. The outcome of this initiative is developing algorithms that is able to analyse big data sets (Variety data sets) and discover new relations and solutions for complex issues in the horticulture production and marketing”.
This project was funded by the European Union’s COSME Programme