The Covid-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the ways that we communicate. ADAS has gained funding from Innovate UK to use this learning to good effect and will co-create a new digital solution called Farm Performance Enhancement Platform, or Farm-PEP. Farm-PEP will connect projects and people, integrating tools and initiatives and providing an online community space for knowledge sharing.
Daniel Kindred of ADAS comments: “We see Farm-PEP as enabling the communications between the people engaged in initiatives like the YENs.”
With partners University of Gloucester’s Countryside & Community Research Institute (CCRI), Agri-TechE, Innovative Farmers, The Farming Forum and Open Coop, the project seeks to engage key players across the industry. The intention is to evaluate the impact of Covid-19 on knowledge exchange in agriculture with a rapid appraisal, due to be published in late spring 2021 and then to create Farm-PEP to assist communications.
ADAS has also gained funding to create Dynamic Benchmarking for the Yield Enhancement Network (YEN) to improve data exchange with growers. The YEN, since its foundation in 2012, has provided static pdf reports to growers on how their crops have performed within a season, compared to others in the network.
Daniel continues: “Our aim is to enable these comparisons online so that users can choose who they compare themselves to, for instance within a geographic region or for a particular soil type.
“We are aiming to make this available for YEN-Nutrition in 2021, and ultimately for YEN-Zero and all the YEN Family.”
These projects will support the development of YEN-Zero, which is supported by funding from The Morley Agricultural Foundation, and aims to quantify the greenhouse gas costs of YEN crops since 2013. This analysis will provide a baseline for comparisons and benchmarking of the different elements that make up a farm’s carbon footprint.
Daniel recently discussed the relationships between crop inputs, yields and GHG emissions at the first Agri-TechE Agritech Express webinar, which is summarised here.
Design of Farm-PEP
Agri-TechE will bring its expertise in engaging online events and digital networking to the project. Together with the other partners, it is organising a series of interactive workshops in spring 2021 to engage with the various stakeholders in the industry and co-design Farm-PEP from the ground up.