Our association

The Kuratorium für Technik und Bauwesen in der Landwirtschaft e.V. (KTBL) is a registered association comprising approximately 400 collaborators from agriculture and the related science, trade and industry, public administration and consulting. The KTBL is institutionally supported by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL). The Governing Bodies of the Association are the General Assembly of Members, the Board and the Main Committee. Every four years, the General Assembly elects members of the Board and the Main Committee from its ranks. The Main Committee makes decisions concerning the guidelines of the KTBL´s work.

The associations office is located in Darmstadt (Germany) where approximately 100 employees work in different areas of expertise, spearheaded by Dr. Martin Kunisch, the Managing Director.

As a non-profit organisation we promote future-oriented agriculture by offering advice to all the stakeholders involved, and providing information and facts. The KTBL is institutionally supported by the BMEL, however, we also work on projects supported by third party funds from a wide range of donors.
We have about 50 working groups, each composed of 8 to 12 experts working on a voluntary basis.

Download our organisation chart (PDF, 40 kB)
  KTBL Employees

We shape the agriculture of the future in a consumer-oriented, socially acceptable and environmentally friendly manner.

Photovoltaic systems - correct alignment of modules

In 2021, Werner Schmid, a member of the KTBL- working group "Energy", examined 480 southern German photovoltaic systems with regard to their orientation. The aim of the data analysis was to identify the "optimal" module alignment. For this purpose, the connections between "module orientation" and annual yield, but also the distribution of the annual yield over the individual months (annual generation load profile) were examined.

The results show that previous recommendations are partly outdated and potential for the German energy transition remains untapped. With a different module orientation, the valuable energy yield could be increased in winter.

Download summary (PDF, 1,4 MB)
 Go to full article (German version)

Participation in international committees on climate protection

The KTBL participates in the work of several expert groups of the "United Nations Economic Commission for Europe" (UNECE). The Geneva Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (CLRTAP) is the framework for our research.

The primary focus of the Task Force on Emission Inventories and Projections (TFEIP) is to keep the methods for drawing up emission inventories for air pollutants up to date and improve them. The Thünen-Institute and the KTBL have drafted a joint revision proposal for the chapter on biogas production which was considered in the air pollutant emission inventory guidebook 2019 of the European Environment Agency (EEA) and the European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP).

The KTBL represents the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) in the VERA expert groups “Housing Systems” and “Land Applied Manure”. VERA is an acronym that stands for „Verification of Environmental Technologies for Agricultural Production“, whose objective is to establish an international framework for testing and verification of mitigation technologies for the reduction of gaseous emissions based on test protocols.

The European Agricultural Gaseous Emissions Inventory Researchers Network (EAGER) is a core group of international scientists - Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland - trying to improve and harmonize national ammonia emission inventory calculations.

Representatives from the KTBL together with the Thünen-Institute (TI) participate in the work of the group on behalf of Germany.
Within the network we try to achieve a detailed overview of the present best available inventory techniques, compile and harmonize the available knowledge on emission factors and initiate a new generation of emission inventories that satisfies protocol requirements. The purpose of the group is to support harmonized emission inventory activities on the European scale (input for UN/ECE expert group, CORINAIR etc.) and to review and coordinate emission model development activities.

If you need more information about the project or any of its deliverables, please contact Mr Sebastian Wulf or Mrs. Brigitte Eurich-Menden.

KTBL as your partner for EU projects

Are you looking for a collaborator on an EU project? Have you thought of the KTBL as a potential partner? Perhaps you are interested in a project partner from Germany, but are not sure whom to contact? Contact us. Our colleague Mr Henning Eckel will be happy to help you.


AGROVOC is a multilingual thesaurus covering all areas of interest to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). The vocabulary currently consists of over 40,000 concepts with around 1 million terms translated into 42 different languages. An international team is in charge of editing. Together with Leibniz-Zentrum für Agrarlandschaftsforschung (ZALF), the KTBL publishes the German translations.

Since 2019, employees of the digital technologies department at KTBL are part of the core team at FAO on the basis of a Letter of Agreement between the two organizations. KTBL provides technical and content curation support thereby improving consistency and helped working out the editorial guidelines and other capacity building material. Additionally, it hosted the Annual Editorial Meeting twice - in 2019 and 2023.

You can learn more on AGROVOC at AGROVOC website.
If you need more information about the project or any of its deliverables, please contact Mr Daniel Martini or Dr. Esther Mietzsch.

Agricultural Engineering

LANDTECHNIK is a scientific Open Access journal that publishes studies and results from applied research in agricultural engineering. The journal is peer-reviewed and published in German and English. Topics range from the development of methods and the use of technology in crop production, animal husbandry, energy production to environmental engineering and information technology.
We support scientists and young professionals from research institutes, industry and agricultural engineering companies in the publication of their projects in order to further develop interdisciplinary exchange of knowledge in agricultural engineering.

If you need more information about the project or any of its deliverables, please contact Ms Barbara Meyer.

 Visit the website Agricultural Engineering

Recent Developments on welfare-oriented Animal Husbandry

The German Veterinary Medical Society organizes the annual conference on the topic of ethology in animal husbandry. The conference proceedings "Recent Developments on Welfare-oriented Animal Husbandry", published after every conference, have become an integral part of the KTBL publications. You can download the conference proceedings containing English abstracts free of charge.

The history of the Freiburg conference is thoroughly documented in the KTBL's publication series. You can use the search function on this website to navigate the content of the publications more easily. Enter your key words and find out in which conference proceedings volumes they appear. We are delighted to be a part of this conference and wish you pleasant browsing.

If you need more information about the project or any of its deliverables, please contact Ms Kathrin Huesmann.

 Visit conference proceedings

Economic efficiency of dairy goat farming

How economical is dairy goat farming and what influence does the stock size have on success? Dr. Isabel Sand and her colleagues from the KTBL discussed this question at the 1st International Congress on Sheep and Goat on 15 and 16 October 2020. The lecture was recorded on video.

If you need more information about goats or any of its deliverables, please contact Ms Isabel Sand.

Download the Abstract (PDF, 352 kB)

Standard Gross Margins

Are you interested in statistical data about German agriculture? Every year, the KTBL calculates the standard gross margins (SGM) for 38 German regions - states and administrative districts - on the basis of the current prices of the quantities produced and the inputs used for all the production processes in agricultural and accounting statistics (agriculture, horticulture, fruit growing and viticulture). In addition to the standard gross margin, yields and animal performances, producer prices and individual direct costs are also displayed. Data are available as a time series in a free web application, broken down by production method and region.

If you need more information about the project or any of its deliverables, please contact Dr Jan Ole Schroers.

 Visit the web application

KTBL/VDLUFA Proficiency Test Biogas

Inter-laboratory tests play a significant role in the quality monitoring of laboratories, as the participating laboratories can objectively demonstrate their performance. To enhance the analytical performance of biogas laboratory, the KTBL and the Association of German Agricultural Analytic and Research Institutes (VDLUFA) organise annual proficiency test biogas for the scope biogas and methane potential, macro ingredients and residual gas potential determination.

If you need more information about the KTBL/VDLUFA Proficiency Test Biogas or any of its deliverables, please contact Mr Mark Paterson.

 Visit website Proficiency Test

IEA Bioenergy Task 37

The batch test is a method which helps to assess biogas or methane potential of a given substrate. The IEA-Report "Value of batch tests for biogas potential analysis" of Bioenergy Task 37 gives an overview on information to be gained from the test, the relation to other test methods and the limitations of the test. It also includes a chapter on the KTBL/VDLUFA-Proficiency Test Biogas.

If you need more information about the KTBL/VDLUFA Proficiency Test Biogas or any of its deliverables, please contact Mr Mark Paterson.

Download report from IEA website

Conference. Construction, Engineering and Environment in Livestock Farming

Animal husbandry is caught between the conflicting contexts of animal welfare, environmental protection and food-safety. In order to make the overall debate more objective, scientific research and discussions among experts are necessary. This is why the KTBL and the Max Eyth Society for Agricultural Engineering – subunit of the Association of German Engineers (VDI-MEG) together with various partner universities and colleges invite you to take part in the biennial conference "Construction, Technology and Environment in Agricultural Animal Husbandry".

Perhaps you would like to contribute to this conference with an interesting paper or a poster? Or attend the next conference as a visitor?

If you need more information about the project or its deliverables, please contact Ms Anne-Katrin Steinmetz.

 Visit BTU website