Using mobile technology to help farmers make better agricultural decisions
Published: July, 2014
Agriculture is the backbone of many developing nations’ economies: the main source of income and nutrition for the majority of the population. However, smallholders are often unable to access information or public advisory services on a regular basis. Mobile technology provides an answer.
Across the developing world, around 40% of people now actively subscribe to mobile services, with 130 million new subscribers every year, and mobile (2G) coverage around 95% by population. This proliferation in mobile communication enables farmers in even the most remote locations to receive timely and targeted agricultural advice, bridging the information gap that conventional public extension services cannot span.
CABI understands the importance of this technology in reaching remote communities and, since 2009, has played a key role in developing knowledge-sharing systems that harness the power of this technology in agriculture. Across a number of projects in Africa and Asia, we work with farmers, mobile operators, content providers, extension services and industry bodies to provide mobile information services across the whole agricultural supply chain.
In this case study, we highlight several of our mobile delivery projects and the impact we are beginning to see the projects are having on smallholder farmers in the target countries and regions.