Post-harvest losses can occur when farmers dry, winnow and thresh their grain and are the result of natural causes or technical failures. Nowadays these losses are also occurring with increasing frequency along the value chain. Situations where post-harvest losses occur too often can threaten the very existence of small and medium-sized farm businesses.
The Nigerian start-up Kitovu Technology Company collects, analyses and aggregates soil and geolocation data in order to reduce the natural and technical forms of post-harvest losses. They match soil types with appropriate seed qualities and with fertiliser and other input quantities to improve production outcomes. To reduce losses along the value chain, a web and mobile technology platform connects farmers directly with producers and processing companies. Small farmers normally have to sell their products through intermediaries who take the largest share of the proceeds for themselves and, in so doing, fuel the persistent poverty that weighs on many of Nigeria’s regions. By connecting up farmers with those using their produce, Kitovu’s platform sidesteps this issue, strengthening the bargaining power of small farmers and thus increasing their livelihoods.
Photo: Annie Spratt / Unsplash (http://bit.ly/2HahsMk)
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