Development and implementation of an electronic system for animal and plant health surveillance

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This case was submitted as part of the Call for Innovations, an annual partnership initiative between OPSI and the UAE Mohammed Bin Rashid Center for Government Innovation (MBRCGI)

Animal and plant health surveillance is a part of the structure of agricultural and livestock production, including supply safety, pest and pathogen control, and certification of agro-industrial products. However, we lacked of tools that allow integration of activities and ensure agility in the transmission of the data obtained in the field. We developed an integrated system of surveillance for the inspectors to use, in the animal husbandry agency in the state of Minas Gerais, the Instituto Mineiro de Agropecuária.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

This work relies on the important mission of improving the processes of animal and plant health surveillance through mapping and standardization of procedures, surveying of the underlying legal and normative tools and the systematization in the collection and transmission of surveillance data, resulting in improvements in all the system, with benefits for the public and private sectors, and also for the consumers.

National agribusiness leaders and administrators of federal and state agencies of animal and plant health surveillance demand a system that allows a greater integration between databases of federal and state levels and also between states. The characteristics considered desirable by such a system include (a) real-time information transmission in the administrative level; (b) the existence of a unified database for issuing online documents; (c) access in decentralized units; (d) data transmission security.

The improvement of the operational processes of surveillance became even more urgent with the breakout of the operation known as "Weak Meat", where the Federal Police of Brazil identified the occurrence of adulteration of meat products with the unequivocal participation of inspection agents. It was an event with a great economic and social impact, which exposed the necessity to improve the work tools of these agents, seeking to add the necessary transparency to their function.

Prior to the implementation of the electronic surveillance system, inspectors recorded their work on written forms, consisting essentially of descriptive fields indicating the irregularities found in the supervised establishment, as well as corrective measures to resolve these. With those records, it was not possible to translate the data into information in order to support decision making. There was also no technical support tool to assist in the conduct of the work field, counting only with a scattered and complex legislation and unharmonized technical manuals.

In this scenario, it can be noticed that the technological evolution, mainly of mobile devices, and information security has reached sufficient levels for relevant applications in the practice of animal and plant health surveillance. The vast improvement in data traffic services coupled with the inexorable expansion of the use of mobile devices in everyday life demonstrates the invariable course that current processes will, in short-term, become completely digital.

Thus, it was important to introduce mobility in data collection to ensure that the proceedings done by inspection agents are uniform and secure, both for the public (regulatory) and private (farmers, agroindustries, storehouses, conveyors) sectors. One of the guidelines established by law determines, for the public agents, the application of technological solutions aimed at simplifying the processes and procedures of customer service and provide better conditions for information sharing, which reinforces the importance of this work.

Considering all that was exposed above, we developed an electronic system for use of the inspectors in order to substitute the written documents, through an app in a mobile device, which connects to a unique web database. Currently, this system is been used by all inspectors of animal and plant health surveillance agency of Minas Gerais state in Brazil.

Innovation Description

Innovation Development

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Year: 2017
Level of government: Regional/State government


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