Let’s take a step to the near future.

A shared global data space for agriculture and food will propel the industry forward. Information will become available to all actors producing innovation. Analytical and decision making tools can incorporate a greater abundance of data sources. A digital economy may arise with online services and applications that use machine readable, interoperable and often publicly shared data. The necessary infrastructure components, including the technology, people, policy and business ones, may seamlessly integrate and work together.

 We believe that Europe is strategically positioned to lead such a transformation of the agriculture and food industry. It may be among the leaders that will coordinate and facilitate the development of the open, interoperable and distributed infrastructure that will help a global ecosystem flourish. This effort should go beyond existing isolated activities and proof-of-concept demonstration exercises. For a data revolution to happen, agriculture and food need a fabric of interoperable and interplaying infrastructure layers that will make data sharing and exchange as natural to us as it is to use the road or rail infrastructure to move from one country to another.

Why we talk about this now? We have just published a position paper titled “Can Europe lead a data revolution in agriculture and food?“. This is our contribution to the recently launched GODAN discussion paper on “A Global Data Ecosystem for Agriculture and Food“. Within GODAN, we have established a Data Ecosystem Working Group where we will kick off and frame this important discussion based, at least to start with, on the important work already done in this paper. Our desire (and expectation) is that this discussion will be broad and inclusive, and involve all relevant strategic stakeholders and forums of the EU (and globally).

Let’s do it.