Compliance software developers are now able to use the architecture that has been established in the report 'An updated generic architecture describing compliance in Agri-Food Supply Chains,' recently published by FarmDigital. The models in the report can also be of real benefit to standardisation organisations. One of the authors, Jan Willem Kruize (researcher at LEI Wageningen UR), provides more information.
Kruize is very happy with the result. 'However, we're not quite finished yet. Soon, there will be a new version of the report with the architecture in a digital format. This means that software developers and standardisation organisations can flick through the architecture and explore it more easily. The relationships between the images are also much clearer and easier to identify. By publishing the material online, we can also update it when new developments come along.'
Why was the report made?
'The report was made in order to provide information on compliance processes in the agricultural sector. "Compliance" is a vast term. To make it more concrete, we looked at what compliance essentially means for farmers and also investigated the existing types of compliance. On the basis of these findings, we produced informative models and described various processes. We described two types of compliance, with the first being "certification compliance". This is for the entire company and entails meeting the GLOBALG.A.P. requirements, for example. The second is "product compliance". This is related to tracking and tracing a product and to quality-related aspects. However, customers such as supermarket chains often impose additional requirements. For example, whereas GLOBALG.A.P. states that no more spraying can take place during the 20 days prior to delivery, supermarkets state that this number must be no more than 25 days.'
What was your working method?
'Within FarmDigital, every deliverable requires a different approach. When drafting the first version of the report, we investigated the GLOBALG.A.P. and carried out a literature study. We combined this with our knowledge on the sector that we have in-house, such as from an expert on horticulture. We formulated requirements for the next version, after which we studied three use cases: melons, grapes and potatoes. This report is now the most up-to-date version. We expect to be able to develop architecture further by incorporating information supplied by users. This is one of the reasons why we are offering the architecture via a new platform.'
What would you do differently if you had to start again?
'In hindsight, I would have preferred to work with potential users at an earlier stage. We've managed to make up for this by publishing the results on an interactive website, so that we are still able to gather feedback. I'm interested to look at the varied responses we receive.'
The report 'An updated generic architecture describing compliance in Agri-Food Supply Chains' is one of the deliverables of the Plant Production Systems FarmDigital.
Jan Willem Kruize