GEOGLAM (GEO Global Agricultural Monitoring) Crop Assessment Tool

The Group on Earth Observations, a partnership of governments and international organizations, developed the Global Agricultural Monitoring (GEOGLAM) initiative in response to the growing calls for improved agricultural information. The goal of GEOGLAM is to strengthen the international community’s capacity to produce and disseminate relevant, timely and accurate forecasts of agricultural production at national, regional and global scales through the use of Earth Observations (EO), which include satellite and ground-based observations. This initiative is designed to build on existing agricultural monitoring programs and initiatives at national, regional and global levels and to enhance and strengthen them through international networking, operationally focused research, and data/method sharing.

The GEOGLAM Crop Monitor provides the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) with an international and transparent multi-source, consensus assessment of crop growing conditions, status, and agro-climatic conditions, likely to impact global production. This activity covers the four primary crop types (wheat, maize, rice, and soy) within the main agricultural producing regions of the AMIS countries. These assessments have been produced operationally since September 2013 and are published in the AMIS Market Monitor Bulletin. The Crop Monitor reports provide cartographic and textual summaries of crop conditions as of the 28th of each month, according to crop type.

Sources and Disclaimers: The Crop Monitor assessment is conducted by GEOGLAM with coordination from the University of Maryland. Inputs are from the following partners (in alphabetical order): Argentina (Buenos Aires Grains Exchange, INTA), Asia Rice Countries (AFSIS, ASEAN+3 & Asia RiCE), Australia (ABARES & CSIRO), Brazil (CONAB & INPE), Canada (AAFC), China (CAS), EU (EC JRC MARS), Indonesia (LAPAN & MOA), International (CIMMYT, FAO, IFPRI & IRRI), Japan (JAXA ), Mexico (SIAP), Russian Federation (IKI), South Africa (ARC & GeoTerraImage & SANSA), Thailand (GISTDA & OAE), Ukraine (NASU-NSAU & UHMC), USA (NASA, UMD, USGS – FEWS NET, USDA (FAS, NASS)), Viet nam (VAST & VIMHE-MARD). The findings and conclusions in this joint multi-agency report are consensual statements from the GEOGLAM experts, and do not necessarily reflect those of the individual agencies represented by these experts. Map data sources: Major crop type areas based on the IFPRI/IIASA SPAM 2005 beta release (2013), USDA/NASS 2013 CDL, 2013 AAFC Annual Crop Inventory Map, GLAM/UMD, GLAD/UMD, Australian Land Use and Management Classification (Version 7), SIAP, ARC, and JRC. The GEOGLAM crop calendars are compiled with information from AAFC, ABARES, ARC, Asia RiCE, Bolsa de cereales, CONAB, INPE, JRC, FAO, FEWS NET, IKI, INTA, SIAP, UHMC, USDA FAS, and USDA NASS.

Evaluation of Extension Reforms in Brazil

To evaluate the impacts of the rural extension policy (PNATER), five territories were selected in three different Brazilian states, including Alto Jequitinhonha (Minas Gerais State), Cantuquiriguaçu (Paraná State), Pontal do Paranapanema (São Paulo State), São Paulo’s Southwestern (São Paulo State), and Vale do Ribeira (Paraná State). An indicator system was elaborated to collect and analyze data from farmers and extension agents in each territory. 12 indicators were proposed to accomplish the desired evaluation. These indicators express the meaningful aspects of the extension reform policy document’s values, principles, and objectives.

Data collection instruments were composed of questionnaires focusing on objective questions, allowing only closed answers to identify the interviewee’s perception of his or her reality. The possibilities for responses were elaborated on a five-point Likert scale—from the least to the greatest—asking respondents to indicate how much they agree or disagree, approve or disapprove, or believe to be true or false. The questionnaire for family farmers was composed of 56 questions, encompassing different indicators, among which three were specific for black rural and indigenous communities. The researchers also added questions from the Brazilian Food Insecurity Scale.

In total researchers conducted 1,000 interviews with farmers and 87 interviews with extensionists (in some territories the goal of 20 interviews with the extensionists in each territory was not achieved due to the difficulty in contacting them or their unavailability in the study period) in the five territories between August 2014 to January 2015.