The Agri-Food Research and Technology Centre of Aragon (CITA) was created by Law 29/2002 on 17 December 2002. It is a public body attached to the Department of Agriculture, Livestock and Food of the Government of Aragon.  CITA carries out research and technology development work for the agri-food, forestry and environmental sectors.

CITA is located on the Aula Dei Campus in Montañana, one of the most important agricultural research campuses in the country. Since 2015, together with the University of Zaragoza, it is part of the Agri-Food Institute of Aragon (IA2).

The origin of CITA dates back to 1964 with the Centre for Agricultural Research and Development of the Ebro (CIDADE) promoted by the then Ministry of Agriculture, although the Agricultural Farm of Zaragoza, created in 1881, was its precursor. In 1970, following the restructuring of the National Institute for Agronomic Research (INIA), it became the Regional Centre for Agricultural Research and Development (CRIDA 03) with responsibility for Aragon, Navarre, the Basque Country and La Rioja. In 1984, the competences were transferred to the Autonomous Community of Aragon and the Agri-Food Research Service (SIA) was created, under the Department of Agriculture. In 2002, CITA was created to cover new fields of research and promote technological innovation in the fields of agri-food, forestry systems and the environment.


To produce quality scientific and technical information about the agri-food sector and the environment which is relevant for the private sector, government and the general public. Research must allow us to increase the sustainability, resilience and competitiveness of agri-food and forestry system as we face global change.


To be a benchmark for research, technology development and innovation in the agri-food and environmental sector in Aragon, Spain and Europe.


CITA’s aims are:

  • To produce quality scientific agri-food, forestry and environmental research.

  • To foster innovation, technology development, training and knowledge sharing activities in the aforementioned fields.

  • To offer accurate and useful scientific information to private sector stakeholders, government and the general public.

The specific aims set out in CITA’s Strategic Plan 2021-2026 are as follows:

  • To align CITA’s research and innovation with European and national funding bodies’ public R+D+I policies, thematic areas and strategic plans, as well as those of the Aragon Government.

  • To strengthen our partnerships with the agri-food and environmental sectors in response to the economic, environmental and social challenges faced by public and private stakeholders, and the general public.

  • To internationalise our research activity and infrastructure, positioning CITA within international bodies and programmes in scientific-technological areas of interest, as well as to promote international cooperation and knowledge sharing.

  • To update working practices, internal communication and the management of CITA’s human resources to enhance efficiency, flexibility and employee well-being.

  • To increase collaboration between research centres, in particular to boost IA2’s activity and strengthen collaboration with the University of Zaragoza, the other organisations on the Aula Dei campus (CSIC, CIHEAM) and the ITA, as well as the INIA-CCA system, gaining specific weight, interdisciplinarity and scientific positioning.

  • To strengthen communication and dissemination of research outcomes to increase their impact on the design of agri-food public policy through innovation, and to offer useful and objective information to the general public.