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National Projects

The American Farm School participates in nationally funded programs under the auspices of Greek ministries and agencies, whose objectives are the enhancement and development of the national economy. In cooperation with public agencies and private enterprises we design, plan and implement projects and activities for the agrofood and tourism sectors.


The SPMO endeavors to identify funding sources for the design and implementation of projects concerning both research and its application in the agrofood and tourism sectors. These sources may be national public funding  (NSRF, RDP, etc. GSRT), European funding (INTERREG, MED, LIFE, HORIZON 2020, etc.), or funding through Greek foundations and enterprises. In each case, our primary objective is to design and implement actions to strengthen the Greek economy and the agrofood sectors, by helping to develop competitive advantages in the market.

Oregano Standardization and Added Value elaboration - O-SAVE


The olive thrives and is cultivated in 50 of the 52 Regional units of our country, while the cultivation areas on the planet are located in very limited zones that have suitable climatic conditions for its flourishing. The OPTIMA (Olive Protection via Thermal Imaging) project is an innovation for the olive growing industry.

Plant diseases reduce or destroy production. Their treatment contributes significantly to the increase in production costs and the burden on the environment with chemical compounds (plant protection products).

The most effective way to deal with pathogens is to quickly detect them before they can develop into an epidemic or spread from points of entry to uncontaminated areas. Today, methods for detecting pathogens in the initial stages of an infection are not widely applied due to high costs. Attacks in the initial stages are not easily perceived by the human eye, while when we see symptoms, it is usually too late for effective treatment.

The methodology adopted in the project is the most recent development in the field of plant disease diagnosis with remote sensing methods using thermal imaging. The combination of thermal, RGB and multispectral camera provides valuable information to make the identification of infected olives feasible.

The OPTIMA project with project code KMP6-0282067 is funded by the Region of Central Macedonia 2014-2020 under the action "Business Innovation Plans".


  • YUMMY Software and Electronic Services Private Equity Company
  • American Farm School Post-Secondary Educational and Training Association

The duration of the project is 3 years.



Development of a molecular and environmental data collection system for quality assurance in the table grape value chain – GraDA

The table grape industry is a growing and promising one for the Greek agricultural economy. It achieves exports while in addition to the primary sector it generates income in another series of activities such as standardization, maintenance, transport and trade. Competition from countries both within and outside the EU is fierce. But he also has to deal with the economic damage caused by the adverse weather conditions (mainly rains) resulting in the quality degradation of the products due to disease attacks. The GraDA project analyzes an innovative way of tackling the issue by combining developments in agriculture, molecular biology and informatics. The partners of the proposal have both the knowledge and the infrastructure to create a reliable system of vigilance and early notification of participants in the table grape value chain. Leading institutions such as EKETA and the American School of Agriculture cooperate with a table grape grower of the Crimson seedless variety of Northern Greece in order to give this particular exportable variety increased credibility in terms of quality specifications and, combined with their excellent organoleptic characteristics, to reduce it to emblematic product of Greek fresh fruit exports. The ultimate goal is to provide the industry with the maximum possible added value. This can be done through the development and implementation of the service described in the action.

The GraDA project with project code KMP6-0284680 is funded by the Region of Central Macedonia 2014-2020 under the action "Innovation Business Plans".


  • Paras's Vineyards
  • American Farm School Post-Secondary Educational and Training Association
  • Centre for Research and Technology Hellas

The duration of the project is 3 years.



Development and production of microbial biostimulants to improve the production and conservation of resources in the cultivation of Actinidia deliciosa and Zea mays (Hellenic Microbial Biostimulants-HeMiBio)

The project (HeMiBio) is an integrated action based on innovative approaches with the main objective of developing and industrial production of microbial biostimulators that will increase the quantity and quality of yields, while simultaneously reducing the use of agrochemicals, kiwi cultivation (Actinidia deliciosa) and corn (Zea mays), two of the main crops in the Central Macedonia Region.

The HeMiBio project with project code KMP6-0260559 is funded by the Region of Central Macedonia 2014-2020 under the action "Business Innovation Plans".


·        Makris Agro

·        American Farm School Post-Secondary Educational and Training Association

·        Veterinary Research Institute Hellenic Agricultural Organization DIMITRA

The duration of the project is 3 years.




Little Green Farmers

The Little Green Farmers project aims to create an interactive platform, which will support the involvement of children in farming activities at home and at school.


Children, teachers and parents will have the opportunity to have an interactive contact with the digital platform, so that:

a. receive cultivation and nutritional advice

b. post material from their crops,

c. interact with other users by exchanging ideas.


There will be an Educational Chatbot on the platform, which will provide information on cultivation methods. In addition, the platform will support the DIY IoT function of sensors that will be constructed or assembled by the children themselves. A first pilot application of the sensors took place at the Primary School of AFS and in the summer employment program "Summer on the Farm".

Also in the context of the pilot application will be applied the practices:

  • Healthy Eating Plate app, a digital app for a balanced diet modeled after Harvard University.
  • Planting in the vegetable garden and in the greenhouses of the School to produce the fresh ingredients that will be used by the students in the cooking laboratory.
  • Assembly by children DIY digital device of the LoRa Network that detects temperature and humidity of soil and air, so that children with their teachers can organize their cultivation care without wasting natural resources.
  • Food waste reduction and regenerative farming practices to close the cycle of sustainable and sustainable crop-to-table farming, an F2F “Farm to Fork” process.

The Little Green Farmers project was awarded the Gold Prize in the GREEN AWARDS 2020 competition in the Eco Living in Practice category, where products, development processes and services related to green lifestyle and the green economy participated.

The project is funded by the ESPA Grants, implemented in collaboration with lead partner AgroApps, lasts 30 months and is completed in November 2022.

facebook-Little Green Farmers

Youtube Little Green Farmers



Sustainable food packaging based on essential oils in polymeric matrices

The purpose of this specific research is the study and development of innovative antimicrobial and antioxidant packaging films (edible and non-edible) using natural bioactive substances and their application to cheeses and cured meats subject to significant microbial alterations and oxidations of fat, color, aroma, so that to produce safe food with improved quality characteristics and increased shelf life. In this context, micro- and nano-particles of essential oils of oregano, rosemary and thyme and/or corresponding particles of natural antioxidant olive fruits will be produced, with the aim of being used as an internal additive or coating material in typical polymeric food packaging films already used for the for this purpose [eg polylactic acid (PLA) etc.], as well as in edible films eg from Chitosan or whey proteins etc. The films that will then be tested in the packaging of cheeses and cured meats in order to ascertain which of them promote antimicrobial stability and provide protection against oxidative rancidity and of course if they are advantageous over the simple films without additions that are already on the market. Therefore, the final laboratory films will be able to lead to new materials for flexible food packaging with anti-microbial activity.


The program "Sustainable food packaging based on essential oils in polymeric matrices" with acronym NanoBioPack and code T6YBP-00307 which is part of the ACTION OF NATIONAL SCOPE: Special Actions "Aquacultures" - "Industrial Materials" - "Open Innovation in Culture" "COMPETITIVENESS, ENTREPRENEURSHIP & INNOVATION" (EPANEK).


  • Nanotypos
  • American Farm School
  • Technological Educational Institute of Crete
  • Technology and Research Foundation
  • Technological Educational Institute of Thessaly

The duration of the project is 3 years.

Program for Rural Development

The main objective of the Rural Development Program 2014 -2020 is to achieve integrated development and sustainable competitiveness in rural areas.  For the 2014 – 2020  period, actions and measures that have been designed include the training of farmers, consulting services, and promotion and use of innovative practices in the agrofood sector.

National Strategic Reference Framework 2014-2020
The NSRF (National Strategic Reference Framework) 2014 – 2020 constitutes the reference document for the allocation of European Union Funds on a national level for the 2014–2020 period. The NSRF vises the bolstering of the Greek economy, restoration and improvement of the productive and social environment of the country, and the creation and maintenance of sustainable employment.

"Research, Innovate, Create" Programs:
RawCheese : Production of high quality cheese from raw cow milk

The aim of the project is to develop an integrated system for the production, promotion and distribution of cheese from raw cow milk with superior characteristics and high added value. It will be produced from the vertically integrated dairy cow farm of the American Farm School. The system will build on traditional technology, which highlights the organoleptic characteristics (taste, smell, texture) of milk.

The raw milk will be thoroughly controlled and will come from a farm that follows a holistic management model. Additionally, specifications will be developed for the production process, ensuring the quality characteristics of the cheese. The product will be standardized and marketed as a branded product with a complete identity to ensure its uniformity and to meet consumers' quality requirements as well as legislative hygiene guidelines. The cheese will be equally safe as that from pasteurized milk; any pathogenic micro-organisms will be eliminated from raw milk and the cheese will be certified throughout the production line to ensure its safety
for the consumer.

The methodological approach will include complementary interventions at all stages of production, from raw milk to final packaging and retail sales. These interventions cover three mainlines of activities that comprise the methodological framework, while the work plan includes four work packages.
These lines refer to the optimization of farm hygiene for high quality milk production, the assessment of the quality of fresh and processed products, and the development of a network of supporting training and market research activities. The final product is innovative for the Greek market since it is produced for the first time and is expected to have high nutritional value. It will be branded, with complete identity and completely controlled origin. The final product will meet all the legislative requirements. The economic prospects of the new innovative product are multiple, with benefits for RawCheese partners, as well as for dairy cow farms and dairy industries in general.
Project Start date: 18.07.2018
Duration: 36 Months

BioCircular: Bioproduction System for Circular Precision Farming

BIOCIRCULAR aims to tackle major issues in inefficient and unsustainable farming practices leading to inappropriate application of resources such as artificial fertilizers, non-optimized value chains in the production system, and insufficient data handling and processing. This will be aimed through the incorporation of smart farming and smart processing processes into an integrated system for the optimal management of a middle-sized farm and the minimization of its carbon footprint. To date, the gaps have not been addressed due to that farmers lack low cost and effective technologies and methods available to them to manage the complexities of whole farm resources and more specifically to transform data into knowledge suitable for decision making; to monitor and interpret important indicators such as soil readiness, nutrient efficiency, product quality and animal welfare which are all interrelated and requires multidisciplinary expertise. BIOCIRCULAR will address these gaps by bringing together novel ICT and cross-border multidisciplinary expertise in precision farming and aims to develop economically viable advanced smart technologies and software integrating multiple levels of farm decision making, considering and integrating business intelligence, Systems Engineering, Future Internet and Data Informatics disciplines, within a whole systems framework.

Project Start date:06/09/2018
Duration: 36 Months
TrustTrace: Design and development of a system of total and documented traceability and quality control for processed agricultural and fishery products focusing on the consumer

In the context of this project, an integrated system of total and documented traceability will be designed and developed for processed agricultural and fishery products focusing on the consumer. A key feature of the integrated system will be the integrated process of certifying a series of critical characteristics of packaged products in terms of their geographical origin (avoidance of fraud), the cultivation process (residual measurement) and the process of processing and packaging (control of microbial loads).
A necessary component to allow the efficient implementation of the proposed traceability system is the interoperability provided by GS1 global standards, including identification standards, data collection standards, and electronic communications interconnection standards, which allow uninterrupted flow of information for each product through the supply chain. Also, as a marketing tool to the final consumer, in the framework of the project, an adaptation of the information formats and the development of a specialized beacons app that will highlight this information will be implemented in the needs of consumer targeting information. The final stage of the integrated traceability system is the consumer feedback with the aim of constantly improving products and designing new ones based on different consumer profiles in specific markets. For this purpose, a decision support system will be developed, which will implement a multi-criteria methodology for the design of new agricultural products. The system's databases will come from the results of feedback/ consumer ratings through the app for the agricultural products they buy, historical sales data, and business cost data.
The proposed system will target the following 5 axes: 
  • Sustainability: The traceability system will also support the record of company practices and measures they adopt for running sustainable business practices such as energy saving, fair work and waste  recycling.
  • Recalls: Total and global traceability from the field to the retailer's shelf will be supported, based on the GS1 standard setting out the framework for traceability procedures, regardless of the generic technologies. The system will provide true product and batch traceability - based on standards of transparency and dissemination of information so as to reduce the risk of damaging the reputation of the trademark and reduce the cost of revocation.
  • Efficiency: The more accurate the information on processed fruit and vegetables products, the less errors the supply chain will encounter in handling, pricing and transport, as well as faster and better communication with trading partners and consumers. Given the narrow profit margins, the system will contribute to greater overall performance and more profits.
  • Security: The proposed system will provide quicker recalls and the ability to trace back to the chain the sources of the problem reaching up to the seedbed, following the strictest food regulations - while ensuring a consistently safe product that strengthens consumer credit. 
  • Quality of Information: Ensures the transfer of rich data and documented information about the product from its point of production to the consumer. Reliable information, accessible to all, means faster entry to new markets, improved relationships between business partners (producers, industry, retailers, retailers) and, ultimately, confidence in the brand.
Project Start date: 17/10/2018
Duration: 36 Months
NanoBioPack: Sustainable food packaging based on essential oils in polymer matrices
Food package normally plays an important role in the quality, safety, lifetime and marketability of processed food. In recent years, the trend for safer and healthier food has led to the study and employment of natural antimicrobial substances, either as additives within the food or as coatings on it. Furthermore, the scientific community is working on the development of "smart" or "functional" packaging, which could actively protect the food from spoilage, pathogenic microorganisms and oxidative alterations of fat, color and flavorings. This active (anti-microbial antioxidant) packaging can in many cases replace the use of synthetic preservatives utilized today (i.e. nitrite, sorbate and sulfite salts), so that packed food become less harmful to health. Antimicrobial antioxidant non-edible packaging can be achieved by the incorporation within food or on coatings composed by simple or multilayered polymer films incorporating antimicrobial substances (such as essential oils, polyphenols, etc.) and potentially employed in food packaging either under vacuum or modified atmosphere (MAP). The development of new antimicrobial polymer films could significantly increase lifetime and safety and improve the organoleptic characteristics of delicate food such as those based on processed animal products (cheese and sausage), which can easily deteriorate, leading to economic losses as well as health problems. Additionally, edible antimicrobial films (biopolymer membranes) based on chitosan (antimicrobial polysaccharide) and/or milk-serum proteins with or without the incorporation of antimicrobial antioxidants, have been of particular interest as they can be used for non-perishable food (without the need of extra packaging), significantly increasing their lifetime.
The proposed research is related to the study and development of innovative antimicrobial and antioxidant packaging membranes (both edible and non-edible), using natural bioactive substances, as well as their application to packaging of cheese and sausages, which can be subjected to significant microbial lesions and oxidation of fat, color and aroma, so that these can be kept safer with improved quality characteristics and increased lifetime. In this context, micro- and nanoparticles of essential oils based on oregano, rosemary and thyme and/or natural olive-oil antioxidants will be produced, in order to be used as additives or coatings in typical polymeric food packaging already employed in the market, such as polylactic acid (PLA), as well as in edible films such as those from chitosan or whey proteins. The films will then be tested in cheese and sausage packaging in order to determine which of those can introduce better antimicrobial stability, can provide effective protection against oxidative decay and if they can replace those already used in the market. Therefore, the final laboratory scale membranes could lead to innovative materials for flexible food packaging with anti-microbial action.
Finally, regarding the economic aspects of the prototypes under development, these concern a world-wide, very active market, that of plastics with anti-microbial properties, which is expected to reach $ 3.6 billion by 2020, with a 30% in Europe, 30% in the America and 30% in Asia, and that of flexible packaging, which is expected to grow by 4.5% (CAGR) from 2018 to 2021, and is expected to reach 93.725 million euros by 2021.
Project Start date: 21/01/2019
Duration: 36 Months
#LittleGreenFarmers:  A Platform to Raise Children’s Collective Awareness Towards a Responsible Food Production and Consumption
Over the last few years the global rate of childhood obesity has been risen dramatically. In Europe, Greece is one of the countries with the highest rates, as nearly 1 in 5 children are overweight or obese. Obesity in childhood is well-known to have significant impact on both physical and psychosocial health. One of the main causes of childhood obesity is the unhealthy and poor diet, which has also been identified as one of the greatest risk factors for morbidity and mortality, greater than air pollution, and smoking. Researchers note that the global solution to the problem of childhood obesity lies in the adoption of a healthy diet model based on the increased consumption of fruits and vegetables. School gardens are used globally as an innovative experiential learning method, to raise children awareness on healthy eating choices, as well as on the production of food that respects the natural resources and the environment. In our country, this model has taken its first steps, through individual initiatives by teachers, environmental education centers and environmental groups.
The #LittleGreenFarmers project aims to raise children’s awareness on the benefits of healthy food choices and to reduce childhood obesity, via an innovative and interactive platform which promotes the experiential learning and engages children to small-scale cultivation activities. The platform will encourage groups of children from schools, environmental groups, neighborhoods, even individual children, to develop a small-scale farming activity in school yards, home yards, or other urban areas. Through the platform, the children (together with their teachers, their parents, or by themselves), will be encouraged to share their farming projects and interact with other users, i.e. upload photos and videos from their crops, compare the plant growth, exchange information and ideas, etc. Based on the Artificial Intelligence technologies, an Educational Chatbot will be created, so as to provide users with a funny and enjoyable learning environment enhanced with various information on how to create a small farm, how to cultivate different species of fruits and vegetables, as well as their nutrition value on human’s health. In addition, the platform will support the collection of data from various sources, as well as from soil condition monitoring sensors (IoT), which will be built by the children using the instructions provided by the platform, in order to provide users with the appropriate cultivation advices.
Project Start date: 12/05/2020
Duration: 30 Months

The Internet of Food Alliance (InoFA) is a collaborative innovation cluster that brings together research and education institutions, the civil society and businesses across the agri-food supply chain in order to assist the implementation of state-of-the-art technological capabilities.

 Purpose of the initiative is meet the emanating challenges related to the circular agricultural economy, food traceability and the environmental footprint. 

The cluster seeks to optimize the process, storage, distribution and storage of products through the digitization of information. 

By means of machine learning and artificial intelligence, insights will be provided to all parties involved regarding the movement and state of the food products flowing across the supply chain. 

With all of the above the InoFA aspires to contribute to the maturation of the greek agri-food supply chain operations, increasing its efficiency and optimizing its performance preparing in that way Greek companies for their participation in supply chains abroad.



Measure 16 Collaboration

Developing collaborations - Operational Groups. Operational Groups consist of several partners with a common interest in a specific, practical innovation project. The people involved in the Operational Group should be from a diverse combination of practical and scientific backgrounds (farmers, scientists, agri-business and others). They work together on concrete, practical solutions to a problem or innovative opportunity. Operational Groups are action and result-oriented groups, where all the actors involved need to work together. All partners in the Operational Groups should have an active role in carrying out the innovative project.

Operational Group Name: G(a)R(l)EEK

«Identification, evaluation and improvement of special quality attributes of Greek garlic germplasm (Allium sativum L.) originated from the area of Nea Vissa Evrou»

Brief description:The nutritional and antimicrobial value of garlic (Allium sativum L.) is particularly high, since it is a rich source of organosulfur and phenolic compounds with therapeutic effects, as well as inorganic elements (selenium). In recent years, the domestic production of garlic in Greece has been increasing, however it is not enough to cover the domestic markets. As the largest quantities of garlic on the market are imported due to reduced domestic production and increasing demand, there is an urgent need to expand domestic cultivation with traditional Greek bulbs, which have superior quality characteristics compared to imported ones, which are more susceptible to pests. during storage.

The purpose of the project is the differentiation and promotion of the local garlic grown in the area of Nea Vyssa Evros, the most economically weak region of Greece, through quality and genetic identification and its promotion as a product of high nutritional value.

The N. Vyssa cooperative, which is one of the most important production areas with approximately 3000 hectares of cultivation (70% of domestic production), has submitted a file for the promotion of locally produced garlic as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) product, in order to obtain identity, added value and competitiveness in both domestic and foreign markets.

Geographical scope:Region of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace

Members of an operational team:



Operational Group Name: Freepot

"Enhancement of Potato Frost Resistance Using Chemical Initiation"

Brief description:The high dependence of potato cultivation on weather conditions places potato producers among the most vulnerable agricultural groups. The effects of frost on potato generally include significant reductions in production, an increase in price and a decrease in export competitiveness, resulting in a negative impact on the welfare of potato growers. Even a mild frost event (>-2°C) can cause foliage damage and reduced tuber production. Severe frost events (<-3°C) can completely destroy production. In summary, dealing with the phenomenon of frost and making producers independent of sudden weather phenomena, such as frost, is extremely necessary. Finding an agricultural practice that will confer an increase in the resistance of potato plants to frost will mitigate the negative effects of frost on plants resulting in greater production under these adverse conditions, mitigation of production dependence on abiotic stresses, therefore protecting the income and ensuring the well-being of producers.


Geographical scope:Interstate

Members of an operational team:





Brief description:The business group (EO) Proud Farm was created with the aim of developing an innovative business model for the entry of young people into the sheep and goat farming industry with low costs and limited business risk. One of the most important problems today is the continuous reduction and aging of the agricultural and livestock population. Young people are unable to successfully enter the industry because they have limited capital and are unable to effectively utilize the available financial tools. In addition, young people feel insecure and uncertain about the outcome of their endeavor, as there is no organized training and support program for the critical first years of their involvement in an agri-food business. Proud Farm aims to reverse the existing data on the entry of young people into livestock farming, by building the first goat and sheep breeding incubator in the Kozani region. It is an integrated breeding and management approach ensuring reduced start-up and entry costs in the industry. The new breeder is asked to invest only in livestock, while at the same time he is provided with a three-year stay in the incubator where he can be trained and familiarized with the daily life of breeding. The new breeder follows a holistic management model to ensure the future viability of his breeding by utilizing all educational and management tools developed by EO. During the three-year hosting, he will have the opportunity to make more effective use of the available financial tools from national and European resources so that the transition to his own facilities becomes smooth and at low cost.

Geographical scope: Interstate

Members of an operational team:





 Operational Group Name: STAR (T) - beef

 "Strategies for the production of calves suitable for fattening in dairy farms, using assisted reproduction technologies"

Short description

About 150,000 tons of beef is consumed in Greece, but less than 25% of the meat is produced in the country. According to the relevant legislation, the fattening of imported calves should take place for at least 5 months in Greece as a necessary condition for the caracsss to be considered "Greek Bred". "Greek” characterises the carcass of an animal that was born and raised in Greece. In our country, purebred or even half-blood meat-producing calves, aged 6-8 months (or even younger), are usually imported and bred for a period of 7-8 months (or less) before slaughter and are characterized as "Greek Bred".

Beef fatteners resort to importing animals from abroad, because in Greece they do not find available calves for fattening. Usually, Holstein male calves are available, whose yields in both carcass and carcass quality are not desirable. However, there are often problems with the importation of live animals due to animal diseases, which prohibit the movement of animals both between states and within the country.

The proposed project will help solve the problem (significantly), as it will enable the production of calves suitable for fattening within the country. For this purpose, controlled innovative technologies will be applied and the appropriate guidelines for the country will be given. Dairy cow breeders will be able to produce calves suitable for fattening in a controlled manner, and fattening breeders will be able to find calves for fattening in Greece. The carcass of these animals will be characterized as "Greek".

Regional unity
Region of Central Macedonia

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • The Hellenic Agricultural Organization "DIMITRA" (ELGO-DIMITRA) / Institute of Veterinary Research
  • American Farm School
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Politikou Brothers General Partnership ,
  • Athanasios A. Diamelas



Operational Group Name: Mountain meat

 "Management of mountain pastures for the utilization of the rich flora of the prefectures of Drama and Xanthi and the production of meat products of high added value"

Short description

Indigenous free-range breeds are an important cultural asset, an integral part of a place's biodiversity, and their presence contributes to maintaining balance in the natural environment. The mountainous areas of the prefectures of Xanthi and Drama are of international interest and importance due to the rare biodiversity and the many unique species of flora and fauna. These rich pastures are the natural food of the area's cattle.

The rare Greek red breed is the breed of cattle that is bred more in the specific area, but it is done without special organization and guidance, with the result that the dynamics of the above breeding are not fully utilized. Breeders cannot base their viability on the financial support of conserving the genetic resources of the breed. They need to create and implement a new economic model based on the exploitation of the beneficial effects of grazing.

Utilizing the aromatic plants and herbs of these pastures can lead to higher quality meat production. Grazing is important for the health and well-being of the animal. It is good for the environment while using local resources to feed the animals can benefit the local economy.

Regional unity
Region of Eastern Macedonia Thrace

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • American Farm School
  • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki / Livadic Ecology Laboratory of the Department of Forestry and Natural Environment »
  • ENA Development Consultants
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Myce Livestock Cooperative
  •  Athanasios A. Diamelas
  • Zevkidis Symeon - Livestock farmer
  • Keivanidou Olga - Livestock farmer
  • Tzorbatzidis Eleftherios - Livestock farmer
  • Tzorbatzidis Nikolaos - Livestock farmer

    3. Operational Group Name: Gen - Sheep Milk

 "Utilization of the genetic material of breeds and breeding systems for the creation of products with increased added value from sheep's milk"

Short description

Sheep farming is vital to the national economy in many countries in the Mediterranean and the Middle East. Livestock farming is particularly developed in areas such as France, Italy, Spain and Greece. Among European countries, Greece is the second largest producer of sheep's milk with 680,000 tons / year. The above statistics are very interesting and make the following study a particularly interesting perspective in both the food and livestock sectors. Milk production is also very important for cheese making as the largest amount of sheep's milk produced is used to produce different types of cheese. Factors such as the animal's diet, reproduction, genotype, race, breeding conditions and the stage of the lactation period affect the protein and lipid concentration as well as the microbiological quality of the milk produced. These parameters are very important because they affect the technological properties and coagulation properties of milk during cheese-making. Therefore, it is necessary to take advantage of the composition of the milk produced by different breeds of sheep that are bred under the same conditions and the subsequent characterization of the products produced.

Regional unity
Region of Central Macedonia

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • American Farm School
  • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki / Department of Agriculture - Milk Technology Laboratory
  • National Center for Research and Technological Development - Institute of Applied Biosciences
  • New Milk
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Farms of Central Macedonia
  • Cheesco

    4. Operational Group Name: Digi-Meat

 "Utilization of technology in the creation of added value to meat produced by the rare Greek short-lived breed"

Short description

The rare Greek short-horn breed is an unused livestock asset for the Region and a potential source of income for the local population, which today finds it difficult to survive in mountainous and semi-mountainous areas. Its exploitation goes through the combined use of digital technology and focused marketing policy.

This action plan uses digital technologies for herd management and traceability in combination with the inclusion of Vrachikeratiki meat in the gastronomic identity of Xanthi and its promotion in gourmet restaurants in Athens and Thessaloniki. The integration and promotion policy utilizes data from the corresponding successful members of the Italian Maremana tribe and the British Dexter. The targeting is twofold: on the one hand, the enrichment of the thematic tourism of the region, on the other hand, the connection of the breeders with the specialty food markets, with the supply of high added value, local identity and limited supply of free-range meat.

The requirements of quality meat markets internationally are specific and have common points of reference which are summarized as follows: stable quantities and quality, information on animal husbandry and breeding, traceability, compliance with standards, proper logistics implementation (times, transport conditions, permanent update). These points are covered by Digitanimal and KalaTHos technologies as components of a niche marketing policy.

Regional unity
Region of Eastern Macedonia - Thrace

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • American Farm School
  • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki / Livadic Ecology Laboratory of the Department of Forestry and Natural Environment
  • ENA Development Consultants
  • GreenProjects SA
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Apostolos Papadopoulos & Co. OE
  • Mecy Livestock Cooperative
  • Kabul Mit. Betuel – Livestock Farmer
  • Mola Ali Mez. Fatme – Livestock Farmer
  • Bedel Mem. Kadir – Livestock Farmer
  • Bedel Kad. Semdesin - Livestock Farmer

    5. Operational Group Name: Dairy-UP

 "Optimizing the management of intensive livestock production by utilizing a wireless network of sensors and a 'cloud' platform to support decision-making."

Short description

Intensive sheep farming is offered as a way out in modern agricultural production; however its yield in our country is still significantly lower than that of other countries (5th place, Eurostat). The industry faces numerous challenges such as the high cost of food and veterinary care. In addition, the abolition of milk quotas (2015) has led to price volatility in the products produced, further limiting the profit margins for the breeder, while also contributing to further abandonment of the industry.

The above data, in essence, raises a fundamental question that concerns both areas that are exclusively active in the sheep and goat industry (Prosotsani-Drama) and the dairy industry in general: what will be tomorrow and which business model is viable for the Greek breeder?

In this context, the livestock sector must focus on improving quality and at the same time reducing production costs and not necessarily maximizing animal productivity. Through Dairy-UP, a regional ecosystem is being created, with the participation of all stakeholders, for the development and promotion of standard methods of operation of livestock units, utilizing modern technologies that will contribute to improving their functionality, increasing efficiency, living conditions and their transformation into competitive enterprises.

Regional unity
Region of Eastern Macedonia - Thrace

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • American Farm School
  • Hellenic International University - School of Agriculture
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • ‘Menoikio’ - cooperative

    6. Operational Group Name: Aromatic Lamb

 "Production of high value-added lamb meat with the addition of aromatic plants and oils in sheep nutrition"

Short description

The purpose of the action is the utilization of the beneficial effects of aromatic plants in a very important branch of Greek animal husbandry, sheep farming. Sheep farming is one of the most important sectors of primary production in Greece, offers income to thousands of rural families and contributes significantly to rural development, especially in isolated and disadvantaged areas. In recent years, there has been a decrease in the consumption of products in the sector, an increase in production costs and a decrease in the profitability of producers, which has led to a decline in sheep farming. Therefore, in order to deal with this recession, it is advisable to create conditions for improvements in productivity and product quality. Developing new products that meet customer requirements is one of the most important development cores. Utilizing the contribution of aromatic plants to increasing their meat production capacity will be an attraction for producers who want to increase their profitability. Finally, improving the quality of meat that may result can lead to products that are attractive to the consumer, not only in terms of their organoleptic properties but also in more substantial ways, which will reduce the negative effects on human health. Informing the producers about the results of these studies, providing advisory guidance for the proper implementation of these innovative applications as well as their transformation into competing companies is the overall aim of the project.

Regional unity
Region of western Macedonia

Members of an operational team

  • Scientific bodies
  • American Farm School
  • TEI OF WEST MACEDONIA, Department of Agricultural Technologists
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Livestock and Animal Husbandry Cooperative of Amyntaio Area
  • Semertzidis Lazaros - Life Secrets

    7. Operational Group name: Elaiorama

«Precision farming and corrective actions for maximization of polyphenols content in olive oil»

Brief description

In recent years, there has been a worldwide trend in food consumption that has bio-functional properties, in other words, there are additional benefits to the health of consumers who consume certain foods in addition to the benefits that would result from eating similar ones. Early harvest olive oil is a special category of olive oil that contains increased levels of antioxidants (polyphenols). The production of significant quantities of such olive oil gives the producers a strong competitive advantage, yielding significant profits, thus contributing to the viability and development of the sector.

The production of early harvest olive oil by Greek producers is a relatively recent direction which requires special handling during the cultivation of the olive tree. The areas that have managed to produce significant quantities of suitable olive oil and the number of producers involved in this effort, are limited. This is mainly due to two main reasons which are the distrust of producers that they may eventually be able to produce and sell this product and the lack of organization and collectivity in production, diffusion of knowledge and information of the production base both for the requirements and for the economic benefits that would result from the growth of the olive oil production sector.

This proposal sets out the scientific basis for the targeted production of olive oil.

Region of Central Macedonia

Members of Operational Group

  • Scientific partners
  • American Farm School
  • AGROMET Company
  • Primary sector representatives
  • Agronutritional cooperation of Central Macedonia
  • Agricultural Oil Cooperative of Polygyros

    8. Operational Group name: Stevia-PRO

«Improvement of the efficiency and quality characteristics of produced Stevia»

Brief description

In recent years, there has been a worldwide trend in food consumption that has bio-functional properties. Stevia production is an innovation for both Greece and Europe. The pioneering effort became a reality by producers in Lamia who dared and cultivated it for the first time.
Significant performance has already been recorded both in the production of a plant completely unknown until a few years ago and in sales, foretelling its commercial success. During the activity of the producers there were various failures. The most important of these occurred due to improper propagation material. Producers changed variety from the initially used Creola and are now turning to SHC14A.
However, there is a big gap in our knowledge about this crop. Also in terms of technological support, the cultivation is at a very early stage, while we do not yet know which places in the area are suitable for cultivating high yields. The present proposal describes the pilot cultivation and evaluation of various varieties of commercially available seed and their evaluation after cultivation in the area. In the variety that will give the best characteristics, the best plants will be selected to create a native population with asexual propagation. Thus, the future plantations that will emerge will guarantee the maximum possible results to the producers.

Region of Sterea Ellada

Members of Operational Group

  • Scientific partners
    1. American Farm School
    2. Christos Stamatis and Co
  • Primary sector representatives
    1. Agricultural Cooperative Stevia Hellas
    2. Green Plants

      9. Operational Group name: PROREGANO

«Improvement of the efficiency and quality characteristics of produced Oregano»

Brief description

In recent years, and especially after the onset of the economic crisis, there has been a shift in medicinal and aromatic plants. Our country started relatively recently the production, standardization and marketing of aromatic plants on a business basis. However, we have not yet taken advantage of its most important comparative advantages, which is the rich biodiversity and endemic plants with high quality characteristics.

The oregano that grows naturally in Koziakas, on the Asklipios mountain, is a very attractive product in the markets and where it was tested, it gained loyal and dedicated customers. There are individual cases of producers who have been active in its cultivation, but they constitute a small percentage of the total product produced. The problem of the lack of a stable quality endemic oregano grown under fully controlled conditions is what this proposal needs to address.

The present proposal describes the pilot cultivation and evaluation of various forms by local plants and their evaluation after cultivation in different conditions of the area. The biotype that will give the best commercially attractive features will be used to create a native population with asexual propagation. Thus, the future plantations that will emerge will guarantee the maximum possible results to the producers. The whole process will be implemented through precision farming systems for the complete control and recording of the climatic conditions.

Region of Thessaly

Members of Operational Group

  • Scientific partners
    1. American Farm School
    2. Development Agency of Trikala Municipality / e-Trikala
  • Primary sector representatives
    1. Agrocultural Cooperative of Processing and Trade of Agricultural Products of Trikala  
    2. Lioulios-Papaefthymiou Company / “Botanical Garden”
    3. Dimitrios Giotas
    4. George Chrysomallos



Project Name: BioAnimalChar

"Utilization of residual agricultural biomass for the production of feed supplements"

Short description

Nowadays, Greek pig farming is one of the most dynamic sectors for the development of the country's agricultural economy. However, despite the significant improvements in recent years, all pig farms show weaknesses, which are mostly related to the agricultural feed provided (such as the cost of farming and poor quality feed). Especially the grant of uncontrolled and incorrectly targeted agricultural feed to pigs leads to significant problems related to

  1. performance (low rate of weight gain of animals),
  2. welfare (frequent food poisoning due to the presence of toxins or pathogens ( -as herbicides) found in animal feed),
  3. the operation of the livestock unit (increase in greenhouse gases (GHG) from animal feces due to indigestion) and
  4. the final product (pathogens or antibiotics granted for the combat in pork and from there to the consumer).

Therefore, the purpose of the BioAnimalChar project is to utilize agricultural biomass alternative products to create a new (low-cost) biocarbon-based feed supplement, which will lead to a significant upgrade of the quality of pig feed, and therefore to increase the competitiveness of Greek pigs internationally.



Project members

  • Scientific bodies
  • National Center for Research and Technological Development (CERTH) / Institute of Bio-Economics and Agro-Technology (iBO)
  • American Farm School
  • Representatives of the primary sector
  • Agricultural Cooperative of Vine Producers of Krya Vrysi "AIGES"
  • Model Pig Breeding Company of agronomist S. Bouzalas
  • Producers Group: "Macedonian Vineyards"
  • Producers Group: "VINEYARDS PANGAIOU EE"
  • Agricultural Cooperative "SPEKO Vrontous Pieria"
  • Companies
  • Company Kafsis S.A.
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