In these times of economic pressure, the concept of sharing data is not well accepted. While it has been shown as efficient between suppliers and distributors with EDI technology, it has stayed quite low in B-to-B. In fact, excess presentation of data at international exhibitions can even drive firms into their competitors' hands.

Well, sharing data is not always about sharing strategic data. Feedipedia encyclopedia of animal feed points out how sharing can actually present advantages.

Feedipedia is an online encyclopedia of animal feeds that provides information about the nature, occurrence, chemical composition, nutritional value and safe use of nearly 1,400 worldwide livestock feeds. This project is managed by Inra, the French agricultural research center, Cirad, the French research center working with developing countries to tackle international agricultural and development issues, AFZ, the French association of animal science, and FAO, the Food and agriculture organization of the United Nations.

The main objective of Feedipedia is to provide the latest scientific information to extension and development workers, planners, project formulators, livestock farmers and science managers. "This is particularly important for emerging and developing countries where feed resources are often underutilized due to lack of data. Providing global knowledge on feed resources, including unconventional and lesser-known ones, contributes to development and use of innovative and appropriate feeding options," explains its founders.

Of course one might see this as "free data" sharing and a missed revenue opportunity. I personally see it not only as a contribution to help developing countries (and not only them - if you take a closer look at its contents and datasheet updates), but also as a contribution to a more global focus, which is the optimization of all supply sources to avoid disruption of worldwide production.

If a lot of countries focus on "avoiding waste" campaigns why not collectively look at "all supply" campaigns?

I take the opportunity of this last post for 2012 to wish you and your family a very pleasant 2013 year with a lot of good news and developments - on a personal level, a professional level, or both.