Nieuwsbericht 20 June 2018

Drones in the air for better plant breeding

Group AVEVE and VITO innovate with the use of drones for crop optimization

In the continuous search for better, faster and more reliable systems for crop seed variety analysis, Group AVEVE and VITO have joined forces. With the help of the innovative application MapEO, they can use drone technology to evaluate the growth and the evolution of different crop seeds. The winner in this story? The professional farmer who gets the most optimal varieties for his crops.

Group AVEVE supports professional farmers and horticulturists with a large range of products and expert advice and is therefore constantly investing in innovative technologies. MapEO allows AVEVE to use drones to look for the presence of diseases and agronomical properties which makes it possible to improve the objective quality assessment of our new crop seed varieties.



The drone imagery documents the growth process of the seed cereals on the field. At different times during the growing season and with different cameras, the drone flies over the plots to collect data on the crops, such as the health index. This data is then processed and analysed. After the growing season, Group AVEVE will study which seed varieties are most suitable to be presented to the farmer.



The big advantage of MapEO is efficiency, objectivity and a better understanding of the growth of each variety. The drone technology allows you to always make observations in a constant way. This goes hand in hand with the pursuit of efficiency improvement. The image analysis can quickly provide scores to the crops for certain characteristics. Before, this was a process that needed time consuming field visits Moreover, a human assessment is not always objective. The measurements of the drones are, and therefore offer the possibility to give even better and more informed advice to the customers. This allows Group AVEVE to provide the farmer with optimal guidance in his choice of the cereal seed variety that is best suited for his field as well as the growth process.



The use of drone technology is fully in line with the innovation strategy of Group AVEVE. Innovation is one of the core values of the group and is essential to prepare farmers for the agriculture of the future. MapEO has been in use since November 2017, enabling farmers to reap the benefits of this innovation this year. With their next purchase of cereal seed at AVEVE they get the assurance that they have passed the best selection. The ultimate goal is to help the professional farmer to increase his return even better.


Group AVEVE with headquarters in Leuven is the N°1 full service provider for agriculture and horticulture in Belgium. They are also present on the Dutch, North French and South German market. Group AVEVE is active in the various segments of the agricultural and horticultural sector, such as animal nutrition, plant nutrition, plant protection, seeds, cereal seeds, plant potatoes and agricultural and horticultural machinery. With the general public, Group AVEVE is known for its 250 AVEVE stores where consumers can go for ‘garden, animal and baking pleasure’®. Group AVEVE wants to further expand its position as market leader through investments and innovation in the agricultural sector. Its 1 900 enthusiastic employees contribute to the AVEVE group, realizing a turnover of 1.4 billion euros. 



Stéphanie Deleul - External Communications Manager Groep AVEVE

+32 476 94 35 65 -


Jürgen Decloedt - Business Developer VITO Remote Sensing

+32 476 41 48 69 -