This site has been archived on 28/07/2015

The Monitoring Agricultural ResourceS (MARS) Unit Mission

Focusing on crop production, agricultural activities and rural development, the MARS Unit provides timely forecasts, early assessments and the scientific underpinning for efficient monitoring and control systems. The work serves the Agriculture and Food policies of the European Union, their impact on rural economies and on the environment, encompassing the global issues of food security and climate change.

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In Focus 

SPIRITS software officially launched at the AFRICAGIS 2013 - GSDI conference in Addis Abeba on Nov. 6th

More information on the launch event is available here

Job Opportunities 

Trainee position available: deadline for application 21.02.2014

The objective of the proposed position is to contribute to the validation of various operational rainfall products using gauge data to be spatially interpolated. The test area is likely to be based on gauge data from a French speaking African country.

Full information at:

Click here to apply

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Latest News & Events

New MARS website

The new MARS webisite contents are hosted in the EC Science Hub

On-The-Spot Checks workshop 2015

This workshop aims to kick-off the OTS check campaign 2015 and to discuss key technological issues linked to the ongoing provision of technical guidance concerning the checks of certain features (i.e.: crop diversification, permanent grassland and EFA). This topic should be addressed by worki...


The MARS unit of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) of the Joint Research Centre is pleased to announce the workshop "LPIS management and challenges" which will take place on Monday 23th–Wednesday 25th of March 2015 in Baveno, Italy.

Launch of FAO/JRC elearning course: "Remotely Sensed Information for Crop Monitoring and Food Security - Techniques and methods for arid and semi-arid areas"

This course describes how the information derived from remote sensing is obtained and best used for crop monitoring in a food security context. It outlines what the exact meanings of the products are and shows how their early warning and food availability information contents can be combined...

20th MARS Conference - 19/20 November 2014 - Dresden, Germany

The main purpose of the conference will be to focus on technical implementation and discuss how to translate the legal framework and the various field realities occurring in Member States into common conceptual features and technical specifications for the IACS, including LPIS. The aim is to...

Crop Monitoring and Yield Forecasting in North African and Southern Mediterranean countries - Rabat, Morocco 19-21/11/2014

The main objectives of the workshop are an exchange of information on the ongoing programs and systems implemented and on future projects in the area of agriculture monitoring and yield forecasting in order to identify common problems, new challenges, and opportunities for future scientific a...

Latest Bulletins & Publications

MARS Bulletin Vol.23 No.10 (Crop Monitoring in Europe - 26 October 2015)

Difficult start for winter crops in Eastern and Northern Europe

The bulletin is available here

Food Security in the East African Community: Impact of Regional Integration under Customs Union and Common Market Policies

The study reviews the evolution of food security in the East African Community (EAC) and analyses the experience with the on-going process of regional integration under the EAC Customs Union and Common Market (CU/CM) policies. The Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community<...

JRC_Report_EAC_Food_Security_Common_Market_2015.pdf 5.88 MB

Crop and pasture monitoring in Eritrea - October 2015

The current long rainy season (Kiremti season) has been characterized by dry spells in July and August leading to delays and underperformance of the crop development in the main agricultural areas (Gash Barka and Debub regions). Indices of vegetation status derived from satelli...

JRC_Eritrea_crop_monitoring_bulletin_October2015_final.pdf 2.17 MB

MARS Bulletin Vol.23 No.9 (Crop Monitoring in Europe - 21 September 2015)

Little relief for summer crops

The bulletin is available here

MARS Bulletin Vol.23 No.8 (Crop Monitoring in Europe - 24 August 2015)

Yield outlook for summer crops drops further

The bulletin is available here