Hopefully, by the time you read this the July showers will have passed and harvest will be in full swing, and I hope it is a safe and fruitful one for all. I have mentioned before in previous articles about the NFU Claims and Rejections Hub. This service allows members and growers to log any claims and rejections that may occur during harvest and throughout the marketing year. Acting on behalf of member concerns and experiences in regards to claims, rejections and how they are dealt with, the hub aims to collect enough data so that areas, patterns and issues can be properly analysed and addressed. Members can load data through a series of questions and can use the service to backdate their issues during busy periods if they need to. The Hub is available at NFU Online and is reopening for harvest 2023.
Demands for data
Another data policy area that we have been working on is the future development of the Digital Grain Passport (DGP). Since the start of the year, NFU has been actively involved with other industry stakeholders to establish and develop the business case for the DGP and how or if the current paper-based passport could be replaced. Although recognising the strategic importance of a digital system for the future and how that would help satisfy increasing demands for data, the Industry Leadership Group, in conjunction with the AHDB, has set up Terms of References and has sought to address the benefits, costs, governance, development and data management issues and also the potential cost of doing nothing. To do this, the Leadership Group set up two larger groups, the Development Group and the Data Group, both made up from a wide range of personnel covering and representing every part of the grain and oilseeds supply chain and have been administered and supported by AHDB technical staff.
The Development Group has concentrated its work on developing a simplified proposal that digitalises the current paper passport with the added edition of passing back and collecting load data to a central portal that can be accessed by growers to review their load data. As currently happens with the paper passport, the DGP will be generated on-farm enabling the grower to pre-populate his or hers load data before the loading vehicle arrives. As of now the vehicle will be inspected on arrival and the lorry driver will input the previous three loads' data and other load requirements in accordance to his or her current responsibilities. This will permit a live assurance check for both grower and haulier, meaning that vehicles should not be loaded unless validated, thus avoiding problems further down the delivery process. The loaded vehicle will only depart once the DGP has been fully completed and validated. On arrival at its destination, the DGP will be by downloaded by the receiver, at which point and after the lorry has been tested and tipped the real time load specification data, such as moisture admix or protein, will be added and downloaded to the grower or grower portal.
The Data Group has worked to set up the permissions, visibilities, securities, aggregations, anonymisation and data governance structures that are required to handle the sensitivities and legalities of data collection. Also it has worked through potential value of aggregated and anonymised data and how that may be used for food safety and security requirements.
More detail of the work that has been done and the project development is available on the AHDB website, but it is worth noting that there is still more to do in finalising the business case and therefore the cost before the end of September, ensuring that a single industry standard DGP, benefiting growers and the supply chain as a whole can be signed off and go to the next stage of transition and roll out away from the current paper system.