The Netherlands and California have alignment on a global vision for food and agriculture. For Washington State, also located in the US West Coast, we have identified similar alignment. The regions are top global exporters of specialty food and agriculture products. Significant parts of the economies and land use are for food production. Together, we face common critical challenges for the future of our food and agriculture industries and have globally-leading visions to transition to holistic approaches to manage and sustain agriculture.
Both regions are home to top agricultural science and technology industries and knowledge institutions. California and the Netherlands are leading agrofood innovation in the US and Europe. Global innovation ecosystems in these regions such as Silicon Valley and Food Valley can support our efforts. Therefore it is desired to enable close collaboration on AgriFoodTech innovation and prevent duplication of existing solutions. This collaboration will accelerate innovations to market faster and foster the higher level goals like more healthy people, a sustainable planet, and prosperous economies. The ultimate goal is to start collaborative field labs in the mentioned issues.
As a starting point for international partnerships for SMEs in the Agri & Food and Horticulture & Starting Materials sectors, within this project an exploratory study will be performed for robotisation and high-tech improvement in the following two domains:
- Fruit orchards (labour technology innovations focused at quality improvement, sustainability, water and efficiency, orchard spray innovation to reduce pesticide drift)
- Greenhouses/indoor farming (analyze which high-value crops will create biggest impact with Dutch know-how in California, explore economic viability of indoor growing in Northern CA with Dutch tech and guidance, explore pilots of new Dutch greenhouse and vertical farming automation concepts for California)