Working Groups

CIGR Working Groups are appointed by the Executive Board to carry out studies on specific subjects of international importance and interest.

The Working Groups Coordinator assists the Chairpersons of the Working Groups in the fulfillment of their task and in providing a liaison with the governing bodies of CIGR.

Working Group Report September 2013


Animal Housing in Hot Climate Working Group

Chair: Prof. Mohamed Hatem
Agricultural Engineering Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt
T.: +2 02 5738000 / +2 0101016796
F.: +2 02 5717355
Vice Chair: Prof. Eileen Fabian Wheeler
The Pennsylvania State University, Dept. of Agricultural & Biological Engineering, 228 Agricultural Engineering Building, University Park, PA 16802, USA
T.: +1 814 865 3552
F.: +1 814 863 1031
Secretary: Prof. Baoming Li
Dept. of Agricultural Structure and Bioenvironmental Engineering, China Agricultural University Beijing 100083, China
T.: +86 10 62736904
F.: +86 10 62737570

Cattle Housing Working Group

Chair: Dr. Joop Lensick
48, boulevard Vauban
59046 Lille cedex, FRANCE

Email: Joop.Jensink
Vice Chair: Dr. Heiko Georg
Institut fur Okologischen Landbau, Johann Heinrich von Thumen Institut
Trenthorst 32, 23847 Westerau, GERMANY
Dr. Anders Herlin
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Dept. of Biosystems and Technology
PO Box 103, 230 53 Alnarp, SWEDEN
Dr. Matti Pastell
Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Green Techonology
Viikinkaari 4, FI-00790 Helsinki, FINLAND

Agricultural Engineering University Curricula Harmonization Working Group

Chair: Prof. Pierluigi Febo
Universita di Palermo, Dip. Economia, Ingegneria e Technologie Agrarie, Viale delle Scienze 13, IT-90128 Palermo, Italy
F.: +39 091 484 035
Vice Chair: Prof. Giacomo Scarascia-Mugnozza
Dipartimento PROGESA, Università di Bari via Amendola 165/a, 70126 Bari, Italy
T.: +39 080 5442966
F.: +39 080 5442977
Secretary: Dr. Antonio Comparetti
Dipartimento di Ingegneria e Tecnologie Agro-Forestali (I.T.A.F.), Università degli Studi di Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Building 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy
T.: +39 091 7028173 / Mobile: +39 328 6221761
F.: +39 091 484035

Rural Landscape Protection and Valorisation Working Group

Chair: Dr. Ken OhnoBioresources
Mie University, 1577 Kurima-Machiya, Tsu, Mie 514-8507, Japan

Mission statement

Landscape is about the relationship between people and place. Human impact on the place has changed the landscape. In the past, the rural landscape has been mostly influenced by farmers and landowners. Now, the landscape has more urban influences. The rural cultural landscape which is a product of environmental conditions and land use is vanishing. Rural landscape protection and valorization are needed. The Rural landscape protection and valorization should integrate natural conservation, farmland retention, historic preservation and so on. The Rural landscape protection and valorization should be linked to the social and economic needs. The Rural landscape protection and valorization should be sustainable. The mission of this working group is having the intensive discussion on the question how research might support rural landscape protection and valorization. The common understanding that can be shared and generalize the issue of the development of future rural landscapes is expected.

Image Analysis for Agricultural Processes and Products Working Group

Chair: Dr. Jose Blasco

Vice Chair: Prof. Thomas Banhazi
SARDI -PPPI, The University of Adelaide, Roseworthy Campus, Roseworth SA 5371, Australia
T.: +61 8 8303 7781
F.: +61 8 8303 7975
Vice Chair: Dr. Manuela Zude
Max-Eyth-Allee 100, 14469 Potsdam-Bornim, Germany
T.: +49 331 5699 616
F.: +49 331 5699 849



  • To meet recent demands on process monitoring in agricultural production, during storage and processing of raw material
  • To develop objective, sensitive, and reliable optical tools for receiving analytical data in a non-destructive way


  • Terrestrial and aerial mapping of natural resources
  • Non-destructive, on-site inspection of product properties and quality control
  • Crop monitoring, precision agriculture, precision horticulture and automatic guidance
  • Livestock farming (both on and off farm applications)
  • Classification in processing lines
  • Robotics or any other process automation


  1. Monitoring
    • Gathering recognition parameters for image processing in on-site monitoring of plants and animals
    • Interdisciplinary exchange and development of advanced image processing methods in different applications
    • Exchange between science and industry for bringing new optical compounds in the focus of scientific working groups supporting new applications
  2. Process management
    • Image processing with respect to geometric and structure analyses
    • Development of phantoms (gold standards)
    • Influence of outdoor light conditions
    • Changes of recognized parameters in on-site monitoring as a function of time
    • Remote inspection of farms, greenhouses, etc via internet

Expected Outcomes

  • Capture the state-of-the-art of image analyses applications in agronomy
  • Enhancement of the collaboration of industry and scientists
  • Publication of an outline of recent trends and future needs of industry
  • Standardization To publish a handbook on Image Processing in Agriculture under the guidelines of the CIGR 

Food Safety Working Group

Chair: Dr. Amauri Rosenthal
Brazilian Institute for Agricultural Research (EMBRAPA), Food Technology Research Centre, Av. das Americas 29501, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 23020-470 Brazil
T.: +55 21 36229630
F.: +55 21 36229713
E-mail: amauri.rosenthal@

Vice Chair: Prof. Antonio Martinez
Vice-Director of the Instituto de Agroquímica y Tecnología de Alimentos, I.A.T.A., Avda. Agustín Escardino, 7 46980 Paterna (Valencia), Spain
T.: +34 963 90 0022
F.: +34 963 63 6301

Vice Chair: Dr. Tatiana Koutchma
Agriculure and Agri-Food Canada, 93 Stone Rd W, Guelph, Ontario N1G 5C9, Canada
T.: 519-780-8083
F.: 519-829-2600
E-mail: Tatiana.Koutchma@
Secretary: Dr. Tony Mutukumira
Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health, Massey University, Private Bag 102904, Auckland 0745, New Zealand
T.: +64 9 414 0800 Ext. 41203
F.: +64 9 443 9640
E-mail: A.N.Mutukumira@


  • To Improve understanding of hazards and their risks and control measures along food production chains
  • To enhance the scientific knowledge and contribute to technological advances for assuring food safety
  • To better understand the consumer perception of risks and improve risk communication


  • Gathering, generating and disseminating information on predicting and monitoring the behaviour and fate of emerging biological and chemical hazard
  • Divulging advances on risk assessment and risk-benefit evaluation
  • Disseminating information on tools, preservation practices and processes to ensure safety along the food chain
  • Understanding and addressing consumer concerns with food safety issues

Logistics Working Group

Chair: Prof. Remigio Berruto
DEIAFA – Dept. of Agricultural, Forestry and Environmental Economics and Engineering, University of Turin, Italy
Vice Chair: Dr. Patrizia Busato
DEIAFA – Dept. of Agricultural, Forestry and Environmental Economics and Engineering, University of Turin, Italy
Secretary: Dr. Elisabeth Quendler
University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences (Universität für Bodenkultur), Wien, Austria


    • To meet recent demands on machinery management in complex agricultural operations related to harvest, distribution and transport of produce (grain, biomass, slurry) 
    • To share the state-of-the art technology for the optimal management of on-farm, extra-farm and regional logistic operations
    •  To develop methods and tools to improve the efficiency of the logistic operations
    •  To set-up standard parameter for comparison of logistic operations
    •  To optimize, with a system approach, the performance of the working chains, under many viewpoints, considering technical, economic and environmental aspects.

Methods and techniques

The WG will discuss and promote the following methods and techniques (and will not be limited to):

  • Set-up of field trials with standard conditions
  • Intermodal operation (e.g. wagon-truck, truck-barge, etc)
  • Innovative handling systems and technologies
  • Storage management and agricultural facility planning
  • Euristic and scheduling tools
  • Discrete event simulation modeling
  • Linear, mixed, integer programming
  • Analytical models, statistical tools
  • Vehicle route planning and logistic networks
  • Management resource planning and JIT methodologies
  • Lean Thinking applied to streaming of information and goods 


In-farm, extra farm and regional logistics

  • Service operation logistics
  • Biomass & forage supply-chain
  • Grain supply-chain
  • Slurry management
  • Storage and operation design

Delivery of high-value produce through the supply-chain

  • Local produce
  • Information sharing 

Information streaming along the supply-chain

  • Traceability performance for the supply chain

Expected outcomes

  • To organize within CIGR specific workshops on the topic
  • To interact with other CIGR Working Groups and Sections
  • To provide reports on state-of-the-art of the topics
  • To develop a network among the people working on logistic topics within CIGR
  • Cooperate with E-Journal with papers on the topic and with a pool of expert reviewers for the subject
  • To promote the activity among industry researchers and agriculture extension services specialists
  • To develop contacts with similar international organization

Precision Aerial Application Working Group

Chair: Dr. Yubin Lan
USDA ARS, Aerial Application Technology Group, Areawide Pest Management Research Unit, 2771 F&B Road, College Station, TX 77845, USA
T.: + 979 260 3759
F.: + 979 260 9386
Vice Chair: Dr. Steven J. Thomson
USDA ARS, Crop Production Systems Research Unit, 141 Experiment Station Road, Stoneville, MS 38776
T.: + 662.686 5240
F.: + 662.686 5422
Vice Chair: Prof. Xinyu Xue
The Center of Plant Protection, Nanjing Research Institute for Agricultural Mechanization, Ministry of P.R. China, No.100 Liuying, Xuanwu District, Nanjing, P.R. China 210014
T.: + 025 8434 6243
F.: + 025 8434 6244
Secretary: Dr. W. Clint Hoffmann
USDA ARS, Aerial Application Technology Group, Areawide Pest Management Research Unit, 2771 F&B Road, College Station, TX 77845, USA
T.: + 979 260 9521
F.: + 979 260 9386 E-mail:
Secretary: Prof. Ron Lacey
Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843
T.: + 979 845 3931
F.: + 979 845 3932


The mission of the Precision Aerial Application Working Group is to develop and implement new and improved precision aerial application equipment for safe, efficient, and sustainable crop production and protection.


The overall objective of this group is to provide precision aerial application solutions for aerial applicators using cutting edge technologies. The first variable-rate aerial application system was developed about a decade ago in the USA and since then, precision aerial application has benefitted from these technologies. Many areas around the world rely on readily available agricultural airplanes or helicopters for pest management, and variable-rate aerial application provides a way of making effective and precise application of agrochemicals. In the context of precision aerial application, variable-rate control can simply mean terminating spray over field areas that do not require inputs, terminating spray near pre-defined buffer areas determined by Global Positioning, or applying multiple rates to meet the variable needs of the crop. Prescription maps for precision aerial application are developed using remote sensing, Global Positioning, and Geographic Information System technologies. Precision aerial application technology has the potential to benefit the agricultural aviation industry by saving operators and farmers time and money.

Action Plan

This new working group will focus on serving as an organizer and coordinator of researchers involved in Precision Aerial Application. This group via the Officers will organize International Meetings in July 2012 (Texas, USA) and 2014 (China - concurrent with CIGR International meeting). Besides serving as a coordinator to report current research projects, each of meetings will have a session focused on the identification of future research needs and which institutions have the capability to do the research. This will eliminate a repeat of research effort and enhance international collaborations.

Expected Outcome

As the first International Precision Aerial Application Group, this new CIGR working group will serve as a valuable resource to the aerial application community. By coordinating research projects across multiple institutions, the role and impact of precision application will increase in aerial application situations.

Plant Factory and Intelligent Greenhouse Working Group

Chair: Dr. Hirokazu Fukuda
Osaka Prefecture University, Japan
Vice Chair: Dr.Esteban Jose Baeza Romero
Wageningen University, The Netherlands
Secretary: Dr. Kotaro Takayama
Ehime University, Japan
 Dr. Noriko Takahashi
Ehime University, Japan
 Dr. Ryosuke Endo
 Osaka Prefecture University, Japan
 Dr. Changhoo Chun
Seoul National University, Korea
 Prof. Dongxian He
 China Agricultural University, China
 Prof. Eldert van Henten
Wageningen University, The Netherlands
 Dr. Jong-seok Park
Chungnam National University, South Korea

Mission statement

  1. Improve understanding of the uniqueness of agricultural production including facilities, instrumentations, energy and water use in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse.
  2. Improve understanding of plant's environmental response under artificial growing conditions, which must be investigated from the point of view of plant physiology and ecology.
  3. Improve understanding of the importance of mechanization and automation to improve labor productivity in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse.
  4. Improve understanding of the effectiveness of computing and modeling to find a way to increase productivity in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse.
  5. Improve understanding of the availability of cutting-edge information technologies, i.e. artificial intelligence and bioinformatics, in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse.

Objectives and Aim

The objective of this working group is to provide an open platform for researchers who are interested in the agricultural production of plant factory and intelligent greenhouse. And this working group aims to promote R&D, communication and education in this field by enhancing information sharing among the researchers, relevant professionals, and consumers and eventually promote the international standing of the CIGR's plant factory and intelligent greenhouse working group in the field. Furthermore, younger generation play an important role in such a new agricultural production in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse, therefore the younger generation initiated researches and communications are strongly encouraged.

Work plan

The plant factory and intelligent greenhouse (PFIG) working group is responsible for all the activities relating to plant factory and intelligent greenhouse in CIGR with close relationships with the existing TSs and WGs. The relevant TSs are TS II, TS III and TS VII. The TS II "Structure and Environment" put attention on traditional structure and environment for animal husbandry and cattle housing (our PFIG working group can provide a specific information on plant factory and intelligent greenhouse), the TS III provides technology and equipment for wide-range of plant production (our PFIG working group can promote the plant production under artificially controlled environment), the TS VII covers all the information technology (our PFIG working group intensively deals with application and implementation of information technology to plant factory and intelligent greenhouse). The chairs and the key steering committee members will create and activate a new PFIG working group to accomplish the above mentioned purposes through the following activities:
  1. Workshops/Seminars: The events will be held every two years, covering the main trends and new developments in the field worldwide. Internationally prominent experts in the field will be invited as invited speakers. Some sessions might be organized by younger generation researchers. Generally, the events will be held in the form of on-site meetings.
  2. Website: The website of PFIG working group will be created on the web server of the research center for high-technology greenhouse plant production in Ehime University (JAPAN) and linked to the main CIGR website. The PFIG working group website consist of R&D trends, technical reports, events, networks, information on trainings and courses, case studies, links to relevant websites.
  3. Working group activities: Regular group meeting is conducted by skype and email to discuss the action plan of working group and share the latest information.
  4. Administration support for the development of outreach materials/activities, partnerships and collaborations.


Expected Outcomes

By organizing workshops and seminars on plant factory and intelligent greenhouse, effective collaborative R&D among industry-academia-government must be accelerated. Furthermore, activity of younger generation researchers in this field would be enhanced.

  1. By publishing special issues in CIGR-Journal on plant factory and intelligent greenhouse, understanding of agricultural production in plant factory and intelligent greenhouse will be improved.
  2. By updating the working group website, prompt sharing of up-to-date knowledge in this field is ensured.
  3. Increase in the number of individual member associate with CIGR.

Functional/WellnessFoods and Nutrition (FWFN) Working Group

Chair:  Dr. Dongxiao Sun
Waterhouse, New Zealand 
Vice Chair: D r. Josef Grochowicz

Secretary:  TBD

  Dr. Margaret Barth
Appalachian State University, USA 
  Sara Bußler
Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Engineering, Germany
  Rosires Deliza

  Dr. Karina dos Santos
  Dr. Adam Ekielski
Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Poland
Dr. Teodoro Espinoza Solares
Universidad Autónoma Chapingo, Mexico 
  Dr. Tatiana Koutchma
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Canada
 Dr. Yukiharu Ogawa
  Chiba University, Japan
 Dr. Svetlana Rodgers
  South Australian Research and Development Institute, Australia

Mission statement:
Promoting nutritional well-being through incorporating “functional/wellness foods” into a balanced diet and lifestyle is imperative to all populations. However, translating relevant scientific advances into real consumer products in the form of “functional/wellness foods” is highly challenging. Our vision is to establish a global Functional/Wellness Food & Nutrition platform, in which academic and industry professionals as well as consumers will have access to our scientific publications, information, products, services and activities related to functional/wellness food R&D and regulation. This requires us to:

•    Improve understanding of the specific role of individual bioactive components for their health-promoting, performance-improving or disease/illness-preventing function, as well as relevant metabolic kinetics, ethical or toxicological issues.
•    Improve understanding of the interactions among the dietary constituents in a single functional/wellness food, and the ultimate contribution of such interactions to the overall efficacy of the whole diet.
•    Improve understanding of consumer acceptance and biological availability of the physiologically active components in various functional/wellness foods based on individual physiological, metabolic, psychological, cultural and social differences.
•    Improve understanding of the nutritional requirements for the modern populations who differ in age, physical state, behavior, lifestyle and genetics, and how functional/wellness foods satisfy the requirements of different populations.