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Agroscope's Tänikon site

Agroscope is Switzerland's competence center for agricultural research, founded in 2014, affiliated with the Federal Office for Agriculture and subordinate to the Federal Department of Economics, Education and Research . Agroscope wants to make a significant contribution to a sustainable agriculture and food industry as well as an intact environment and thus contributes to improving the quality of life in Switzerland.


The research area moves along the entire value chain of the agriculture and food industry. The goals are competitive and multifunctional agriculture, high-quality food for a healthy diet and an intact environment. The research institute orients itself towards the needs of its beneficiaries.


On January 1, 2014, all federal agricultural research institutes in Switzerland were merged under the name Agroscope. Agroscope thus became the federal competence center for research in the agriculture and food industry. Initially, four institutes were created under one management. An Agroscope Council was created, which is responsible for the strategic direction.

By the end of 2016 there were four institutes:

  • Institute for Crop Science IPB : The research work of the IPB was geared towards diverse plant production with adapted plant varieties and resistant cultivation systems.
  • Institute for Livestock Science INT : In addition to the appropriate keeping of animals, the focus of INT's work was the sustainable and competitive production of milk, meat and bee products as the basis for healthy, safe and first-class food.
  • Institute for Food Science ILM : The ILM examined natural foods and certain ingredients with regard to their health benefits.
  • Institute for Sustainability Sciences INH : The focus of the work at INH was on the development and assessment of sustainable agricultural production systems with regard to the climate and sustainable use of resources. A diverse urban space in the lowlands and in the mountain areas should also be sought. The institute also coordinated research in organic agriculture and promoted multifunctional and competitive agriculture that treats the environment with respect.

The reform was continued in 2016 and the structure of Agroscope was simplified. Since January 1, 2017, Agroscope has consisted of three competence areas for research technology and knowledge exchange, seven strategic research areas and the resources unit. Locations are Avenches ( Swiss National Stud SNG), Breitenhof (stone fruit center), Cadenazzo , Changins , Conthey , Güttingen (fruit growing test farm), Liebefeld , Posieux , Pully , Reckenholz, Tänikon and Wädenswil .

The areas of competence are:

  • Animals and animal products
  • Plants and herbal products
  • Method development and analytics

Strategic research areas are:

  • Plant breeding
  • Production systems plants
  • Plant protection
  • Production systems animals and animal health
  • Microbial systems of food
  • Agroecology and the Environment
  • Competitiveness and system evaluation

In the research concept 2018 to 2021, 17 strategic research fields (SFF) are defined:

  • SFF01: Optimizing and coordinating multifunctional grassland use and livestock farming
  • SFF02: Develop resource-efficient cultivation methods and systems for arable farming and special crops
  • SFF03: Breeding and offering high-performance and marketable plant varieties
  • SFF04: Optimizing the protein supply for humans and animals
  • SFF05: Develop sustainable, low-risk crop protection
  • SFF06: Support and promote animal welfare and animal health
  • SFF07: Use animal genetics and animal breeding for livestock husbandry that is adapted to the location
  • SFF08: Making microbial biodiversity usable for agriculture and the food industry
  • SFF09: Lower microbial risks and antibiotic resistance for safe food
  • SFF10: Promoting food quality and product innovation
  • SFF11: Optimizing production systems through smart farming
  • SFF12: Demonstrate the strategic success positions of the Swiss agriculture and food industry in open markets
  • SFF13: Recognize potential to improve the competitiveness of farms
  • SFF14: Assess sustainability and eco-efficiency in agriculture and identify opportunities for improvement
  • SFF15: Protect the soil and use it appropriately
  • SFF16: Preserve and use the diversity of species and habitats in the agricultural landscape
  • SFF17: Making agriculture fit for climate change and reducing its contribution to climate change


An Agroscope researcher collects data in the field.
Blossoming corn and poppies on the edge of the field, symbol of biodiversity

The research areas include work areas in both animal husbandry and crop production.

  • For arable farming, the cost-effective production of high-quality plant products for food or cattle feed while preserving soil fertility and environmental compatibility is being investigated. The maintenance of the landscape, in particular the preservation of biological and scenic diversity, is also a focus.
  • Viticulture, berries as well as aromatic and medicinal plants are referred to as special crops: This involves rationalizing and adapting production to the market, the quality of the products and sustainable production. Domestication of alpine plants is intended to offer agricultural production and industry in Switzerland new, interesting varieties.
  • In plant protection, methods for prognosis, prevention and diagnosis as well as control strategies and agents against insects, nematodes, fungal and bacterial diseases are developed and optimized. The work in plant protection concerns all pathogens, pests and weeds that threaten arable farming, viticulture and vegetable growing and extends to the entire area of ​​Switzerland.
  • Plant varieties are being studied for easier and more environmentally friendly cultivation.
  • Guarantee of product quality.
  • Milk and meat production is about husbandry systems, agricultural advice and feed, as well as concepts to prove authenticity. In recent years, the group has also carried out research on the control of hole formation in cheese
  • Safety and quality are the focus of the health protection and protection against deception of humans, animals and the environment by means of regular inspections of the production and trading companies of animal feed as well as the analysis and verification of the manufactured and traded products.
  • The natural resources soil, water, biodiversity and air should be conserved. They not only provide us with our food, but also drinking water and renewable energy, and they help to recycle nutrients from organic waste. Agroscope examines the condition of environmental resources and determines the influence of management on natural resources and the limits of their resilience. Agroscope uses this to develop recommendations for sustainable, multifunctional agriculture.
  • Life cycle assessments of food from production on the farm to the counter and optimization options are shown.
  • Decision-making bases for the acquisition of machines, animals and buildings.
  • AgriMontana deals with the sustainable development of mining areas and the contribution of agriculture to this development. The aim of the program is to develop and implement development strategies for agriculture and the upstream and downstream sectors in the mountain area.

Swiss National Stud SNG

Two priorities were set for the Swiss National Stud in Avenches :

  • Activity 1: Biodiversity and training: The stud supports and promotes sustainable, competitive and animal-friendly horse keeping, taking into account the other objectives of agricultural policy. As a competence center for horses, it supports all players in the horse industry in developing solutions to current and future problems and makes its infrastructure, breeding animals and specialist knowledge available to them.
  • Activity 2: Horse research and reproduction: The Swiss National Stud supports sustainable, competitive and species-appropriate horse keeping and breeding across the country, which also corresponds to the other objectives of agricultural policy. The specialists at the Swiss National Stud (ethologists, veterinarians, agronomists, etc.) carry out numerous research projects in the areas of well-being and behavior, health prevention, reproduction and genetics. They work closely with the equestrian industry and research institutions from home and abroad.

See also


  • Hans Popp: Origin and Development of Agricultural Research Institutes , Bern 2001.
  • Robert Sieber, Max Rüegg: 100 years of the Federal Research Institute for Dairy Industry. FAM-Information 441, 48 pages, 2002.
  • Josef Lehmann: From the control station to the national center for agroecology: On the history of the agricultural research institute in Zurich-Reckenholz 1878–2003. Zurich 2003.
  • Agroscope's Swiss National Stud . Flyer on the Agroscope website.
  • Agroscope (Ed.): Annual Report 2017 . May 2, 2018, ISSN  2297-4350 ( [PDF; accessed October 25, 2018]).

Web links

Commons : Agroscope  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Webpage Agroscope Switzerland
  2. ^ Popp, Hans: Origin and development of the agricultural research institutes , Bern
  3. History at
  4. Organization on
  5. Work program 2018 to 2021 on agroscope.admin-ch
  6. Agroscope: Grasslands and Arable Systems ( Memento from August 9, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  7. Agroscope: Viticulture and Oenology ( Memento from July 19, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  8. Agroscope: Berries, Medicinal Plants ( Memento from July 19, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  9. Agroscope: Plant Protection ( Memento of July 28, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  10. Agroscope: Plant Protection and Extension Fruit and Vegetables ( Memento from July 28, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  11. Agroscope: Arable crops and genetic resources ( Memento from August 12, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  12. Agroscope: Product Quality and Safety, Nutrition and Health ( Memento from July 19, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  13. Agroscope: Milk and Meat Production ( Memento from August 29, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  14. Agroscope: Milk and Meat Processing ( Memento from July 19, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  15. Daniel Wechsler in conversation: In search of the lost holes , in: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung October 24, 2012
  16. [cf. Agroscope Annual Report 2009: 19]
  17. Agroscope: Environmental Resources and Agriculture ( Memento from August 6, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  18. Agroscope: Biodiversity and Environmental Management ( Memento from July 19, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  19. Agroscope: Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Technology ( Memento from August 10, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  20. Agroscope Agrimontana ( Memento from August 31, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  21. Agroscope: The Swiss National Stud ( Memento from August 9, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  22. Agroscope: The Swiss National Stud ( Memento from August 9, 2011 in the Internet Archive )