Ramesh, a farmer in the southern region of Punjab grows potatoes in his farm. Today, he gets accurate information on when to sow the crop, the temperature around his farm, the right mix of chemicals required, how to tackle crop infection, if any, and finally the time when the potatoes will be ready to harvest along with their quality, size and the overall quantity of yield.
The application that Ramesh uses is called SmartFarm, a data-driven farming solution created by Bengaluru-based CropIn Technology. For farmers like Ramesh, and other large companies like ITC, Mahindra & Mahindra, McCain etc., the solution is transforming a once cumbersome and unreliable process—into something intuitive and, crucially, effective.
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“There were great developments happening in ICT solutions in the last two decades. However, there was no company that offered solutions for agribusiness. That’s when we decided to bring cutting-edge technology for every acre of farm and provide access to every farmer possible,” says Krishna Kumar, Founder and Chief Executive, CropIn Technology Solutions.
Ripe for the picking
CropIn created a web and mobile application that includes enterprise resource planning and business intelligence for the agriculture sector. Using geo-tagging, analytics and data science tools, the solution provides insights like field management consultation and technical assistance on agricultural data to farmers, contract farming companies, NGOs and government bodies to help them improve their crop productivity.
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For contract based farming companies or NGOs, there are field managers who constantly assess the produce and the harvest and identify the problems. For example, if there are pests in the farm, the farmer takes picture of the damaged crops, records a voice message and shares it with the experts for diagnosis, who then respond without visiting the farm.
“Farmers are now getting better quality and more produce from their farms. Banks and insurers are ready to provide them with crop loans or insurance. For export companies they now have a tool to manage their operations, make crops traceable so that harvested crops meet global quality standards,” says Chittaranjan Jena, CTO, CropIn.
With their predictive data analysis to farmers, the company has been able to cut down farmer revenue losses by 18 percent.
“There is a benefit for every player in this ecosystem, be it the farmer, or a contract farming company, or an insurer,” says Kumar who envisages that around 20 million farmers in the next five years will use their technology from the current one million.
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CropIn is currently working in 18 states in India and plans to be in around 18 countries in the next 12 months.
“Our client retention rate is at 92 percent and is spread across geographies and around 100 varieties of crops. With current solutions of our applications, we are defining the norms of product traceability in India and globally. Our apps can be customized to help small farmers and large corporates intuitive to use,” says Siddhartha Choudhary, Chief Revenue Officer, CropIn Technology.
The company is also working on an artificial neural network model for farmers.
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“We will have enough data for a localized area, for example, last ten years of weather information, crop trends, satellite images etc. This data will get enriched over a period of time, and the model will be self-learning. It will provide value to farmers in and around that localized area, and also to others across India and the globe to reap farming benefits,” explains Kumar.
Source Link: http://cio.economictimes.indiatimes.com/dobig/news/detail/1072