A coalition of associations from the EU agri-food chain recently launched a joint EU Code of Conduct on agricultural data sharing The Code promotes the benefits of sharing data.
The Code of Conduct (CoD) was launched to provide agri-business models, including agri-cooperatives and other agri-businesses, the opportunity to swiftly move into an era of digitally enhanced farming. Of course, the CoD provides guidance on the use of agricultural data, particularly on the rights to access and use the data.
This EU CoD on agricultural data sharing by contractual arrangement was agreed by the associations Copa and Cogeca, CEMA, Fertilizers Europe, CEETTAR, CEJA, ECPA, EFFAB, FEFAC and ESA to set transparent principles, clarifying responsibilities and creating trust among partners. It sets out key guidelines for operators to follow, combined with a check list. Granting access to the necessary data will facilitate and accelerate data driven business models.
The signatories of the CoD believe that access to accurate agricultural data is vital to develop digital farming enabling farmers and cooperatives to produce more using less resources. In order to fully reap the benefits of digital farming, sharing data between different partners in the agro-food chain must be conducted in a fair and transparent way.
The associations say that the CoD recognises the need to grant the data originator (the one who has created/collected the data either by technical means or by himself or who has commissioned data providers for this purpose) a leading role in controlling the access to and use of data from their business and to benefit from sharing the data with any partner that wishes to use their data. The CoD underlines that the right to determine who can access and use the data is attributed to the data originator. In practice this means that for instance, the rights on data produced on the farm or during farming operations is attributed to the farmer and may be used extensively by him/her.