AI-driven agritech firm CropIn on Tuesday said it has partnered with Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) to provide information and advisory services to African farmers through a digital platform to boost their productivity and income.
AGRA works with governments, private sector companies and other organisations to bring knowledge and extension services to farmers through the use of self-employed village-based advisors (VBAs), CropIn said in a statement.
In the new partnership, CropIn and AGRA will select and train 10,626 entrepreneurial VBAs to reach three million farmers in Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Mali, Tanzania and Mozambique.
In these unprecedented times, VBAs have restricted movement, and are unable to train farmers in gatherings of more than 2-10 persons.
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There is, therefore, a critical need to improve on a digital extension to ensure that farmers continue to gain access to information, and the inputs they need to sustainably increase productivity and income,” CropIn’s Chief Revenue Officer Jitesh Shah said.
Knowledge dissemination and advisory services to farmers via VBAs will be provided through the digital platform by the remotely-placed agronomists, he said.
“Advisories provided will be on sustainable farming practices, pest and disease outbreak, weather forecast, and more. We expect to see significant growth in this sector once our solutions are implemented, he added.
Amid new challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic related market volatility, locust attacks, and the growing effects of climate change, farmers in Africa need all the support available to build resilient and highly productive agricultural systems, AGRA’s Vice President of Strategic Partnerships Vanessa Adams said.
“We see this partnership with CropIn as one of many critical COVID responses to strengthen the VBAs and their farmer services support towards improved livelihoods. This is a learning initiative as well, where the data generated will be critical in informing future plans for last-mile development, she added.