Follwing an open call published by the the SmartAgriFood2 project, inviting SMEs to develop smart services and applications for the agri-food sector based on the validation and use of results from the SmartAgriFood (Phase 1) and FI-Space (Phase 2) FI-PPP projects, Integrated ITDC submitted its proposal which was analyzed by independent evaluators, supervised by SmartAgriFood2 and proven to meet the requirements of the call.
SmartAgriFood2 is a phase 3 FI-PPP (Future Internet Public Private Partnership) project supporting SMEs.
The proposed project is called SSRF-DSS (Sustainable Small Ruminants Farming Decision Support System) and will provide a web-based, model-driven decision support tool for farmers using small ruminants (sheep and goats) in extensive farming methods. The model that is the basic inference engine of the app helps farmers optimize their annual income, taking into account labour hours, among other variables.
EU farmers have gradually acquired more animals over time so as to be eligible for higher/more subsidies. This has led to big and difficult-to-manage flock sizes, additional fodder costs and pasture degradation. With rising fodder prices in the international market, farmers could afford less fodder but flock sizes were not reduced, inevitably leading to overgrazing and pasture degradation.
Consequentially, the quality of pastures has been deteriorating while the animals are malnourished and less productive. Our calculations show that a reduction of stocking rate (number of animals), at constant level of subsidies and expenditure on imported fodder, would lead to higher incomes (an average 35%).
SSRF-DSS is an integrated platform where stakeholders (farmers or other bodies) will
- Use the model, through a user-friendly web interface, for an EU area with tested factors, to plan their annual income in an optimal and environmentally friendly way.
- Input data for different EU areas where key factors vary (such as subsidies, land rent costs, fodder costs etc).
- Help interconnect the app with other FIWARE-enabled apps or Open Data sources within the EU.