Half of the billion people affected by undernourishment worldwide earn their primary living from smallholder agriculture. The productivity of these farmers remains very low. A major issue in this context is the lack of access to technical and market information, and to financial services. Providing access to rural advisory and financial services through mobile phones – a highly promising medium to reach millions in remote areas – has a high potential to improve smallholders’ productivity, stabilise their incomes, thus contributing to increased food security.
Access to mobile phone networks is growing dramatically in rural areas of developing countries, providing a powerful channel of communication and the ability to link excluded rural communities to up-to-date information. The aim of the present project is to “bundle” key services of agricultural advice from private sector, research and extension institutions with financial services providers and telecommunications companies.
The unique Agri-Fin Mobile program approach works with partners to build sustainable models, where farm and crop management tools and financial services are "bundled" in affordable, unified platforms n mobile phone channels to promote mass uptake commercially. The program targets partners with existing financial, MNO and agricultural technical service mobile platforms or applications, or demonstrated interest in developing and investing in them, and facilitates development of a business model whereby the bundling process provides an increased value proposition for each partner, such as, increased fee income, greater outreach or reduced risks.
The overall goal is that smallholders increase and stabilize their incomes and manage their production cycle in a more effective way. This shall contribute to improved livelihoods and an increased food security at household and system levels.
Primary outcomes of the program are:
• Demand-driven bundled financial and rural advisory services via mobile phones are elaborated and made available;
• Sustainable and scalable business models are established and work;
• Smallholders have sustainable access and make accurate use of financial and rural advisory services;
• Knowledge of models, services and products are captured and shared for dissemination and replication.
All stories about Agri-Fin Mobile
Uganda: Uganda: Orange Releases Orange Money to Improve Farmers’ Agricultural Productivity and Life Quality July 30, 2013
This month, Orange Uganda, a telecom operator, will begin specifically targeting farmers as potential customers with its mobile wallet product, Orange Money, giving them a safe, convenient way to buy farming supplies and get paid for their harvests.
Philippines: Mercy Corps Partnership Ushers in the Mobile Age for Rural Farmers July 11, 2013
Mercy Corps brought together a bank and an agricultural research center to address farmers' needs for advice that will increase their crop yields and profits while also providing better banking options to manage their finances.
Indonesia: Indonesia: Agri-Fin Mobile’s Gender Analysis Highlights Female Farmer’s Vital Role in Production, Limited Access to Agriculture Information July 3, 2013
When Ida was 15 years old, she dropped out of school to work in her parents’ rice field, like many young girls her age. In the relentlessly hot sun, she planted seeds, weeded out tall grasses, and sorted through the rice post-harvest.
Zimbabwe: Zimbabwe: Experts gather to develop new mobile agricultural service product June 26, 2013
Zimbabwe’s rural populations can often be characterised by poverty and food insecurity, recently exacerbated by unprecedented economic hardship due to the nation’s economic decline and the hyperinflation crisis.
Indonesia: Agri-Fin Mobile uses LISA to enhance smallholder farmers' life quality June 24, 2013
Agri-Fin Mobile made a groundbreaking move in December, 2012 when they launched LISA--a mobile platform that empowers local smallholder farmers to receive agricultural tips and submit their problems to experts.
Zimbabwe: Agri-Fin Mobile and Zimbabwe Farmers’ Union Join Arms to Improve Information-Sharing with Farmers June 21, 2013
Mercy Corps’ Agri-Fin Mobile in Zimbabwe signed an MoU with Zimbabwe Farmer’s Union last week. The MoU allows the two organizations to join arms to improve information-sharing with more than 180,000 smallholder farmers in Zimbabwe.
Voices of Inclusion: Mercy Corps and GSMA Mobile for Development April 16, 2013
Visa’s Head of Corporate Responsibility Douglas Sabo discussed the impact mobile services are having on financial inclusion efforts around the world with Elizabeth Berthe, Senior Director of Financial Services Innovation at Mercy Corps, at the 2013 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February.
Indonesia: Farmers in Indonesia reap the benefits of mobile technology April 16, 2013
Farmers in Indonesia have begun to reap the benefits of using their mobile phones to get agricultural services following the launch of the LISA platform in December 2012.
Zimbabwe: Organic, fair-trade farmers in Zimbabwe link to a key buyer through mobile April 16, 2013
A specialized produce buyer in Zimbabwe has increased the prosperity of thousands of smallholder farmers, but it has run into a problem: not enough cash.
Uganda: Unleashing Ugandan farmers’ potential through mobile phones April 16, 2013
A powerful new mobile platform combining agriculture information and financial services specifically designed for smallholder farmers is going live in Uganda, helping farmers plow even more value from each acre.