Goal of the B-CGMS

The aim of the Belgian Crop Growth Monitoring System (B-CGMS) is the elaboration of an integrated information system predicting reliable, timely and objective estimates of crop yields and able to locate calamity areas


B-CGMS results from the adjustment of the European model CGMS to Belgium conditions. This process required a modification of the forecast system to take into account local conditions. This concerns the pedo-climalological databases, the crop parameters and the working scale.

The operational yield forecasting models used in the Belgian system are of two types: the crop growth simulation model (CGMS) on one hand and some empirical or statistical models using trend analysis, remote sensing, meteorological data and scenario analysis on the other hand. The system which was developed also makes use of combinations of these different models.

At the Belgian level more detailed information (e.g. soil map, weather station network) is available. For that reason it was decided to adjust the basic grid size (50 x 50 km in CGMS) to:

  • 10 x 10 km grid size (country level)
  • 5 x 5 km grid size (agricultural regions)
  • 1 x 1 km grid size (circumscription level)

General flowchart of the Belgian Crop monitoring & Yield forecasting system


Differences between EU-CGMS and B-CGMS

Spatial divisions Outputs only at level of 2 NUTS (Nomenclature of Statistical Territorial Units) -regions (Flanders, Wallonie) Outputs also at level of agricultural zone (14) and  circumscription (27)
Grid 50 x 50 km 3 different levels :
1 x 1 km, 5 x 5 km et 10 x 10 km
Soil data European soil geographical database
(1 : 1 000 000)
1 : 500 000 and Aardwerk database of soil profiles
Suitability soil / crop Based on soil types Based on additional use of land use data (IACS)
Elementary Mapping Unit (EMU)
= NUTS Ç Soil mapping unit Ç Grid
Consists of one or more soil types Contains only one soil type