The "Fresh Fruit" is a pilot project of the “High Tech Farming” interregional partnership within the Agri-food Smart Specialisation Thematic Platforms.
The "Fresh Fruit" brings together technological solutions surrounding fresh fruits (grapes, kiwis, etc.). It aims to test and establish these technologies at demonstration farms and farms that act as living labs throughout Europe and it encourages cross-regional knowledge transfer and facilitate private investment in AgTech. The three test sites of the project are located in the Region of Central Macedonia and Tuscany Region.
The “High Tech Farming” interregional partnership aims to modernise the agricultural sector by improving the uptake and implementation of high-tech solutions across various agricultural sectors. The partnership seeks to create an ecosystem for testing, dissemination and commercialisation of technological solutions and to connect regional authorities, demonstration farms and technology providers.
“FreshFruit” is one of the two projects currently running in the context of the “High Tech Farming” partnership. The starting point of the pilot project was the strong interest of the American Farm School in Thessaloniki and the Region of Central Macedonia to better address the needs of regional producers. They decided to develop a new service, which aims to improve the quality and overall management of table grape and kiwi production in the Region. The development of the new service was inspired by the experiences of Tuscany Region and their demonstration farm in Alberese, which shows in practice the economic benefits of viticulture and selective harvesting.
Total Budget of the project, 4465000Euro
Total Budget for the Region of Central Macedonia, 965000Euro
Evidence of success
Through “Fresh Fruit”, RCM and AFS support farmers, packers, international importers and retailers to develop high-tech entrepreneurship in the Region. The technologies, to be piloted in the project, will improve cultivation processes and will enhance the international trade opportunities of local enterprises. The project will increase the ability of farmers to self-finance the adoption of digital technologies and will support major players in the supply chain that can champion new technologies
The pilot business case has not yet directly leveraged any specific multi-level funding synergies. This has not happened yet as there is still a gap in the alignment of funding programmes and administrative tools in different Regions and Innovation Ecosystems.
Potential for learning or transfer
The project activities include both the creation of an innovation ecosystem in the Region as well as the testing of new pilot technologies. The ecosystem comprised of farmers, suppliers (including nurseries), clients (including importers and retailers), field advisors, technology providers, researchers and trainers, private funds and public stakeholders. The American Farm School plays the role of integrator, acting both as a competence centre and as a digital innovation hub. The participating regions, outside Central Macedonia, provide connections with technology providers, thus opening international market opportunities for newly commercialised technologies.