GIS and EUREPGAP : applying GIS to increase effective farm management in accordance GAP requirements

Schreiber, Werner (2003-12)

Thesis (MSc)--Stellenbosch University, 2003.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: With the inception of precision farming techniques during the last decade, agricultural efficiency has improved, leading to greater productivity and enhanced economic benefits associated with agriculture. The awareness of health risks associated with food borne diseases has also increased. Systems such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (RACCP) in the USA and Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) in Europe are trying to ensure that no food showing signs of microbial contamination associated with production techniques are allowed onto the export market. Growers participating in exporting are thus being forced to conform to the requirements set by international customers. The aim of this study was to compile a computerized record keeping system that would aid farmers with the implementation of GAP on farms, by making use of GIS capabilities. A database, consisting of GAP-specific data was developed. ArcView GIS was used to implement the database, while customized analyses procedures through the use of Avenue assisted in GAP-specific farming related decisions. An agricultural area focusing on the export market was needed for this study, and the nut producing Levubu district was identified as ideal. By making use of ArcView GIS, distinct relationships between different data sets were portrayed in tabular, graphical, geographical and report format. GAP requirements state that growers must base decisions on timely, relevant information. With information available in the above-mentioned formats, decisions regarding actions taken can be justified. By analysing the complex interaction between datasets, the influences that agronomical inputs have on production were portrayed, moving beyond the standard requirements of GAP. Agricultural activities produce enormous quantities of data, and GIS proved to be an indispensable tool because of the ability to analyse and manipulate data with a spatial component. The implementation of good agricultural practices lends itself to the use of GIS. With the correct information available at the right time, better decisions can promote optimal croppmg, whilst rmmrrnzmg the negative effects on the consumer and environment.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Gedurende die afgelope dekade het die gebruik van presisie boerderytegnieke tot verbeterde gewasverbouing gelei, wat verhoogde produktiwiteit en ekonomiese welvarendheid tot gevolg gehad het. 'n Wêreldwye bewustheid ten opsigte van die oordrag van siektekieme geasosieer met varsprodukte het ontstaan. Met die implementering van Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) en Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), poog die VSA en Europa om voedsel wat tekens van besmetting toon van die invoermark te weerhou. Buitelandse produsente en uitvoerders word dus hierdeur gedwing om by internasionale voedselstandaarde aan te pas. Hierdie navorsing het ten doel gehad om 'n gerekenariseerde rekordhouding stelsel daar te stel wat produsente sal bystaan tydens die implementering van GAP, deur gebruik te maak van GIS. 'n Databasis gerig op die implementering van GAP is ontwerp. ArcView GIS is gebruik word om die databasis te implementeer, waarna spesifieke navrae die data ontleed het om sodoende die besluitnemingsproses te vergemaklik. 'n Landbou-area wat aktief in die uitvoermark deelneem was benodig vir dié studie, en die Levubu distrik was ideaal. Verwantskappe tussen datastelle is bepaal en uitgebeeld in tabel-, grafiek- en verslag vorm. Die suksesvolle implementering van GAP vereis dat alle besluite op relevante inligting gebaseer word, en met inligting beskikbaar in die bogenoemde formaat kan alle besluite geregverdig word. Deur die komplekse interaksie tussen insette en produksie te analiseer, was dit moontlik om verwantskappe uit te beeld wat verder strek as wat GAP vereistes stipuleer. Deur die gebruikerskoppelvlak in ArcView te verpersoonlik is die gebruiker nie belaai met onnodige berekeninge nie. Aktiwiteite soos landbou produseer groot datastelle, en die vermoë van GIS om die ruimtelike verwantskappe te analiseer en uit te beeld, het getoon dat GIS 'n instrumentele rol in die besluitnemingsproses speel. Deur middel van beter besluitneming kan optimale gewasverbouing verseker word, terwyl die negatiewe impak op die verbruiker en omgewing tot 'n minimum beperk word.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/53440
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