Apr 30, 2008

GAF AG´s advanced system AgroView® has assisted more than 24,000 farmers to prepare their agricultural declarations

GAF AG, an internationally renowned company for remote sensing applications and information systems, has supplied their AgroView® software in the four German Federal States Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Western Pomerania), Brandenburg, Saxony-Anhalt and Saxony.

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AgroView® is a comprehensive, yet robust and easy to use GIS-Software, designed especially for farmers. Farmers wanting to make an application for agricultural subsidy payments must define the location of their agricultural parcels in an established federal state reference system. For this purpose every year in March farmers receive an adapted version of AgroView® on CD which includes integrated current digital orthophotos as raster imagery and new vector data, such as cadastral information. Farmers can digitise the spatial extent of their own agricultural parcels and landscape elements, and then add attributes to these, such as parcel area, crop type, claimed aid schemes and so on. Direct import of GPS-data is possible in the ESRI shape file format, as is importing of data from the previous year. Reference points can also be set to provide information about necessary modifications to the existing reference system.

But AgroView® is designed for much more. In Saxony, for example, further forms can be generated with the so called “Application CD“. Farmers can bundle a package containing their digital application on a data medium such as a CD. A data covering letter is automatically generated for each bundle of data, thus providing unique identification. Farmers that want to submit an application to the relevant state agricultural office need only to transfer the signed data covering letter and the corresponding bundle of data on a suitable digital medium. The advantages are obvious: no additional paper is necessary, no break in the chain of data, support is provided by plausibility checks in the program and, last but not least, use of data from the previous year speeds up the process. So in Saxony in 2007, applications for approximately 97 per cent of the agricultural areas were submitted digitally.

As a client, the Saxon State Ministry of Environment and Agriculture is very pleased with the increasing electronic filling of applications in recent years, which is the result of using AgroView® in Saxony: “In the “Application CD“ project in Saxony, the acknowledged high standards of GAF in the GIS field have melded optimally with the further requirements of application filling, such as form design and complex plausibility checks. As a result, the “Application CD” is a real “all-rounder” and acceptance by farmers is very high. In particular farms with the juristic person legal form couldn’t imagine still filling solely paper-based applications. Every year in March the “silver disk” from Munich is therefore veritably longed for by farmers. Just as positive are the vibes coming from the various State Agricultural Offices. Since the introduction of the new system of “payment entitlements”, their annual activation with “eligible area” and cross compliance obligations, the complexity of administrative procedures has increased enormously. Therefore even highly committed Agricultural Office staff sometimes cannot possibly know every last detail of European guidelines. Against this background the “Application CD”, with the straightforward user guide and the comprehensive plausibility checks for all forms, is now an essential digital consultant to the farmer. The complexity of the administrative procedures affects not only the farmers but also continues in the Agricultural Office. Without digital data transfer the time schedule for application processing could not be met.

Thus, in Saxony, the administration and farmers alike benefit from the advantages provided by using AgroView®. In the agricultural administration in Saxony the LaFIS® product suite is also deployed alongside AgroView®, as well as GAF AG remote sensing services in the field of subsidy control stretching back many years. That’s no pure coincidence but is due to the enthusiasm, professional competence and customer-friendly service of GAF AG. The technical skills, and especially the pleasant cooperation climate during project development, mean that GAF AG will also in the future be an indispensable partner for realization of further e-government projects”.

More about the IACS–GIS Product Range:

The inclusion of GIS techniques into the Integrated Administration and Control System is supposed to further increase the reliability of the declarations, to the benefit of the interests of the farmers, the national and European administrations. GIS, comprising the data (raster and vector) and the adapted SW packages support the application process, the administrative checks and the on-the-spot checks, thus improving the efficiency of national IACS systems in term of accuracy, timeliness and costs.

The IACS-GIS system-components of the LaFIS® product suite are fully adapted and integrated in order to serve the specific needs of agricultural administrations. Depending on requirements, the systems are connected to a geo-data and IACS server and facilitate application support, application processing and control, as well as the compilation and maintenance of Land Parcel Identification Systems (LPIS).

The product portfolio consists of:

• LaFIS®-Client, EU compliant support for administrative controls
• LaFIS®-Mobil: Mobile client for on the spot controls
• LaFIS®-LFK: Compilation and maintenance of agricultural cadastre systems
• LaFIS® Server: Application Server hosting server based business processes
• LaFIS® Admin: Data and user administration
• AgroView®: Area and parcel administration and subsidy claim support for farmers
• AgroView®-Online: Web based AgroView application

The use of flexible technologies allows compatibility and integration with existing IT infrastructures. The essential database architectures for management of spatial data (Oracle Spatial, Informix, PostgreSQL, MS SQL) and IACS data (DB2, ADABAS) are also supported. The ESRI database gateway ArcSDE®, for managing spatial data in DBMS, can also be integrated into the geo-data management.

GAF AG has implemented IACS-GIS solutions in Romania and in more than 8 federal state administrations in Germany. Furthermore GAF AG is participating in building up the adequate Geo Data Infrastructure for the IACS related enterprise GIS.

About GAF AG: (www.gaf.de)

GAF AG is an international consulting company with extensive competence and expertise in applied remote sensing and spatial information systems. GAF has been active during the last 20 years in more than 100 countries throughout Europe, Africa, South-America and Asia. The company offers a comprehensive portfolio of services, including the supply of geo-data (e.g. satellite and aerial imagery, digital elevation models) and geo-services (e.g. image processing, thematic mapping, GIS/DBMS applications and software development), as well as consulting, capacity building and training. GAF AG has a proven track-record in performing technical assistance projects in the natural resources and environmental sectors. The company’s activities are overseen by the CEO, Dr. Peter Volk.

To obtain more information, please contact:

LaFIS Team
Tel. +49 (0) 89 12 15 28 0
e-mail: agroview@gaf.de