Research project Connecting Humans in the Agrifood INdustry

Complete CHAIN
Combinatielogo esf AI

Contact our expert

Stephanie Van Weyenberg

Stephanie Van Weyenberg

Data integration and cattle farming technology expert


General introduction

The CHAIN research project, with support from European Social Fund (ESF), examined the stumbling blocks for digitalization and data sharing for employees. Agri-food companies, often SMEs, have many performance challenges. One of the solutions is digital chain collaboration, where data flows better and more efficiently through the entire chain. But employees on the shop floors are not always skilled and trained to create and maintain such chain collaborations. Technologically, this is already feasible, but what about the workability for the employees? How can the stumbling blocks be removed in a sustainable way with attention to human capital? CHAIN connects companies, but above all people: Connecting Humans in the Agrifood INdustry.

Research approach

Within this project, ILVO, Worktitecs, Flanders' FOOD and Alimento worked to develop a working guidance process and to bring people together, digitally and socially, in the data sharing ecosystem within the agri-food industry. The guidance program was developed and tested in close collaboration with companies from various agri-food chains. It has 4 phases: initiation phase (analysis and exploration of the chain and chain partners), foundation phase (consolidation and start-up), realization phase (implementation) and recalibration phase (evaluation and adjustment). After testing, the roadmap was validated through additional companies.


The result is the website '', which functions as as roadmap with the aim of efficiently organize collaboration between the various partners in the production chain, so that every company benefits and more workable jobs are created.

The roadmap provides insight into the possibilities and the phases to be completed for developing a sustainable digital chain and inspiration based on concrete examples and tools.

The roadmap is not a ready-made, one-fits-all method. Companies can contact the project partners for questions or support with the development a tailor-made process via this link: