The International Food and agriculture Organisation in 2011 estimated that roughly one-third of the physical mass of all food is lost or wasted around the world. In Sub Saharan Africa , the estimate is roughly 37 percent or 120–170 kg/year per capita.
There are approximately 4.5M small scale farmers in Tanzania and represent the single biggest contributor to the economy.
But sadly far from this vast growth in production there still lies a huge problem in the supply chain, storage and warehousing, quality control and transport systems and the production of good quality crop. The starting point of the challenge is the tracking of crop from small scale farmers to the end buyers through buyers, cooperatives and various warehousing entities.
There are a number of smartphone App solutions on the market aimed at bringing in the smallholder farmer in contact with various buyer organisations and input suppliers. There has not been widespread adoption of these Apps for various reasons ranging from lack of smartphones to limited training resources to train small-scale farmers. We believe that a phased approach is necessary where a USSD solutions should be adopted to get large number of farmers on a tracking system which can evolve into a fully fledge supply chain solution and at some later stage with more widespread adoption of smartphones, a smartphone App solution.
USSD is a simpler solution that bridges gap and can be deployed allot faster and adopted by more people in rural communities.
E-KOROSHO is a USSD based supply chain and payment management system, which tracks the supply of crops from the farmer all the way to the regulated warehouses, as well as the final payment to the farmer after the bidding processes. The solution will also allow clients to capture farmer related data to enable better insights into the regional performance of farmers and impact of the client’s management approach.
The technology used is through a USSD channel which means any person with a feature phone with no access to the internet can use the system. The information captured can be accessed through the internet or through a smartphone App that can be used by sellers, buyers, warehouse managers or any party that sits somewhere along the supply chain.
SASA CONNECT supports its SASA Agri-product. This product manages USSD and APP based supply chain and payment management systems. Tracking the supply of crops from the farmer to the market, as well as the final payment to the farmer. The solution allows for better insights into the entire ecosystem. Key touch points within the product journey include.
- Onboarding of farmer
- Registering crop deliveries
- Tracking of crops by farmer
- Disseminating information
- Direct mobile payments farmers
- Crop board back of management
Proven tech built on R, AWS and Rails, with automation, scalability and efficiency at its core. The SASA Console includes; real time visualisations, accounting & product processes, funding and treasury systems, USSD mockup and editing screens, data import pipelines and Tools.
- Access to Data: Access of data of all the farmers, information of the farms and the crop they farm and deliver.
- Input products: Accurate and true numbers of farmers and the amount of input products they need.
- Transparency: The whole transaction from the farmers’ delivery to final payment can be tracked and managed.
- Education: Can educate farmers and disseminate information to farmers and will know in real time how much crops are delivered and with the farms data project future crops harvests.
- Attract the next generation: Introduction of technology will appeal to young people from the communities to pursue farming.
- Accuracy: Ensure farmers receive the exact amount they are due from buyers along the value chain
- Platform: Users will have real-time capabilities and access to generate reports through the E-Korosho platform customized to its requirements.
- Reach: Mobile network agnostic. Any handset type owned by the farmer can work – no downloads or data needed.
- Simplicity: Farmers facing solution that is simple. Simple dial to a USSD short code e.g. *150*98# on any phone to get started. Don’t need internet access or expensive smartphones.
- Education: System enables education and dialog between stakeholders.
- Goals for ecosystem: Transparency, real time reporting, ability to shaping behaviour, market insight.