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Agricultural data portal: the government assigns Jean-Marc Bournigal to the task

© Irstea


Minister of Agriculture Stéphane Le Foll, Secretary of State Thierry Mandon and Secretary of State in charge of Digital Affairs Axelle Lemaire have just assigned the task of implementing a digital data portal on agricultural data to Jean-Marc Bournigal, President of Irstea. The report entitled Agriculture–Innovation 2025 submitted late 2015 already highlighted the importance of exploiting digital data. Recommendations for the configuration of the future portal will be presented in June 2016.

The report, entitled Agriculture-Innovation 2025 and submitted to Minister of Agriculture, Agri-food and Forestry Stéphane Le Foll and to Secretaries of State Thierry Mandon (Higher Education and Research) and Axelle Lemaire (Digital Affairs) on October 22, 2015, highlighted the strategic importance of exploiting digital data for agriculture. The proliferation of data sources combined with a reinforced capacity to store and process them have made it possible to develop new innovative services for all participants in the value chain, from farmers and professional organizations to industry manufacturers.

As Thierry Mandon highlights, “Making all this agricultural data available through a portal will be a huge leap forward - not only for farmers, who are key participants, but also for scientists trying to understand the relationships between farming, environment and climate. The data will also supply digital models used to understand how agrosystems operate, predict bioresource production and therefore contribute to food safety, and ultimately comprehend methods of adapting to climate change.”

Jean-Marc Bournigal, President of Irstea In order to achieve these targets, a data portal for innovation in agriculture will be implemented. The aim of the portal will be to provide the agricultural ecosystem with a wide range of data and information gathered from various sources including public, commercial and farming data. All consultations held since the report was delivered have confirmed that agricultural stakeholders are particularly interested in the proposed data portal.

In this context, the Ministry has appointed Jean-Marc Bournigal, president of Irstea, to prepare the implementation of the data portal. Bournigal will also put together an action plan to be presented in June 2016 on how to encourage innovative stakeholders to develop new services using data from the portal.

“This portal is essential in providing farmers with technical solutions that are better suited to their needs. This collection of data is an impressive pooling of observations. As such, it can be used to help the French farming industry to change.” Stéphane Le Foll

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