We provide farmers with direct market access that is demand driven (Pull) and aggregated rather than the traditional supply driven approach (Push). This also democratizes storage.
The traditional practice when smallholder farmers harvest, is to take it to the local market. Unfortunately, most of the farmers in the same community farm the same produce, so they cannot buy from each other. They are too far out from urban areas, and have poor market knowledge beyond their geography. Middlemen take advantage of this competition & poor market knowledge to drive a bargain.
This has translated to lower income, production for the small scale farmers has also fallen since most go to waste and they have to compete with other farmers for the same middlemen who have limited capacity.
On the other hand, in urban areas, food prices are high, mostly because of unavailability, losses during transportation & lack/poor storage.The current system has successfully created a glut at the farmers end and lack at the consumer's end, as distances from farms to urban areas stretch for hundreds of kilometers.
Our solution is to use technology to unlock values of all kinds of unused/underutilized assets from skills, produce to transportation infrastructure to improve the supply chain.
The first solution our technology platform does is to provide information symmetry between the farmers and the consumers.
The second allows consumers to place orders online. This runs like the Kickstarter model, allowing people to refer friends so that it can reach a tipping point faster so everyone can benefit.
The third, democratizing storage, is to provide logistics and transportation support between the farmers and the consumers by pooling truckers (similar to Uber but for trucks). Spoilage and waste is a function of time, instead of produce bouncing from one market to another looking for buyers, which can take up to 15 days, having a committed buyer shortens this to 2-3days.
By understanding the different users( farmers and consumers) we provide appropriate technology for them to use the platform. Simple SMS for farmers and a more robust platform for consumers.