Satellite measures actual potato yields in Europe

(Eindhoven, August 25, 2008). From today onwards anyone can have access to the actual state and yield of potatoes in a large part of Europe. Potato growth information is calculated from satellite based recordings by Basfood from Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Interested parties choose themselves from which area they wish to acquire the information by selecting parcels of 25×25km from a map of Europe. The purchase price is € 500 per parcel, for which the buyer gets weekly the actual yield in kg per hectare from July until the end of October. This information is particularly interesting for trading parties and government services. is the second innovative program Basfood introduces in the Agricultural sector this year. Earlier in the year the satellite information specialist, successfully introduced jointly with ZLTO, the leading Netherlands farmer’s organization, the program called, which is directed to the farmer’s fields. In Mijnakker (MyField) the farmer gets weekly or monthly information about 9 parameters, among which soil humidity, nitrogen concentration, leaf area, yield. In the meantime over 1400 farmers are using mijnakker.

All links in the chain benefit
Croplook is the next step to let more players in the food chain benefit from satellite technology. Market prices tend to react strongly on information about expected yields. Frans Bastiaanssen, president of Basfood, says: “The uncertainties of the pending yield figures obviously feed speculative behavior. Most final yield numbers of potatoes, for instance, only become available in march of the following year, well into the contracting season for the following crop. With Croplook the information becomes available within days, which is on unprecedented short notice. This will make the markets transparent and will eventually lead to improved planning and price stabilization in the food chain”.

Low entry barrier
The information is offered in the form of tiles of 25×25km. The user picks the required tiles by selecting them on a map of Europe. The purchased tiles contain the information of the entire growth season, including total biomass development of all vegetation, potato hectares, yield and dry matter content. The information is provided both in graphs, table and maps with a resolution of 250×250 meter, which is periodically enhanced to 60×60 meters for the potato intensive areas.

This is only the beginning
From today onwards, potato information can be obtained for a large part of Europe and more is to come. Frans Bastiaanssen: ”We start with potatoes, because that is the product we have most experience with, through several major large scale pilots in the Netherlands and Poland. Potatoes are about the most difficult product for us to process with our technology, but in the meantime we’re pretty good at it. We are working with large companies and institutions to include other crops like wheat and sugar beets in our product portfolio and are planning territorial expansion into the next years. We are the only ones in the world who are able to perform vegetation measurements in kilograms and square meters, without having to go into the fields for validation sampling” according to Bastiaanssen. “We therefore are able to offer Croplook worldwide already to interested parties. Parties interested in European wheat area and yield in 2008 may contact us directly.

About Basfood
Basfood ( ) from Eindhoven delivers essential information to the agro food business based on satellite imagery. The information is accurate, detailed and reliable. Our leading technology is based on the SEBAL model (Surface Energy Balance Algorithm for Land). Basfood is the only company in the world offering quantified crop information during the growth season.
BasFood, De Zaale 11, 5612 AJ Eindhoven. Tel.: +31-408514250
Contact: Frans Bastiaanssen, President.
Mobile phone: +31-653130370,

Click on the „Sneak Preview“ button on to find the actual information in one demo tile.

Author: EARSC

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