- The VitiGEOSS project has developed a set of innovative services providing forecasts on weather & climate, phenology, irrigation, and disease, as well as business and sustainability management tools for optimising sustainable grapevine cultivation.
The VitiGEOSS European project has developed an innovative vineyard management platform providing forecasts, estimations, and recommendations for winemakers to help boost vineyards’ sustainability and adaptation to climate change. The platform offers tools for supporting farmers and business managers to improve their decision-making processes, and, thus, the optimisation of vineyard operations.
The intelligent services offered combine the Internet of Things, Earth Observation services, sensors, mathematics, and Artificial Intelligence to provide winemakers with complete information about climate, phenology, plant physiology, and disease forecasts, as well as management recommendations for their business operations.
“We offer a single one-stop shop platform to provide decision-making support to wine producers and improve vineyard management thanks to accurate mapping, novel production indicators, image and time series processing and precise forecasting”, explains Rosa Araujo, VitiGEOSS Project Coordinator and Project Manager at Eurecat Technology Centre.
The platform comprises a wide range of digital decision-support services for viticulture, including weather, sub-seasonal and seasonal climate predictions, and a service that offers monitoring and forecasting of vineyards’ phenology. This service utilizes satellite and in-field observations to better plan and organize the management of the vineyard.
The system is also prepared to provide useful information on actual crop water consumption and actual biomass production of grapevines, among other vegetative variables. Through this service, farmers can receive water consumption demand and yield estimates for the upcoming season.
Other services available in the platform comprise a service that provides predictions of the risk of downy and powdery mildew infections, as well as suggested treatment recommendations to be applied, adjusted to the risk level. “Our latest calculations point out that the application of this tool could reduce the number of pesticide applications in the field and water consumption by an average of 20%,” says Marta Otero, Technical Coordinator for the VitiGEOSS Project and Researcher at Eurecat Technology Centre.
The VitiGEOSS platform also aims to reduce exploitation costs and the environmental impact of operations in the wine sector. In that regard, a business management service has been developed to manage field tasks, such as harvesting, taking into consideration the economic costs, environmental impact, and the timing available.
“The VitiGEOSS platform aims to be the reference decision-support system for wine producers, providing accurate information during the growing season to boost vineyard sustainability,” says Ernesto Bastidas, Business Agriculture Line Leader at eLEAF. “The data parameters in the VitiGEOSS platform have been provided for different wine production areas and wine varieties, demonstrating the scalability of the services,” he adds.
Responding to important challenges in the wine industry such as mitigating the effects of climate change and moving towards more sustainable production, the solution has been validated at three demo sites in Italy, Portugal, and Spain with regional leading wine producers. The pilots have served to calibrate and test the models and services included in the platform.
The VitiGEOSS consortium is made up of nine partners from Spain, Italy, Portugal and the Netherlands, including three research and technology organisations (Eurecat Technology Center, the Barcelona Supercomputing Center and LINKS Foundation, a university (the University of Naples Federico II), an SME (eLEAF), a consultancy firm (PwC) and three wineries (Familia Torres, Symington and Mastroberardino).