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Digital Technology: IT, Blockchain, Mobility, Communication

How Blockchain Enable Local Impact

Transcript from the panel webinar, dated July 22, 2021

Featuring Flora Adachi Asibe, IITA

I am a researcher at the international institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) Ibadan Nigeria. I am excited to be on this panel and share my little knowledge on Block chain in Agriculture.

In Africa and Nigeria, Agriculture is one of the most important sectors because it has huge economic potentials. But its full potential remains untapped. And for farmers and consumers, their standard of living remains the same. There is very little difference in profit margin, increased food availability and delivery.

It is estimated that 30% (more than 1.3 billion tonnes) of food produced for human consumption does not reach final consumers. However, investments in Agricultural technologies that have the potential of connecting farmers and consumers to the right supply chain can impact positivity on livelihoods and the economy.

Blockchain in Agriculture is becoming a trend especially in this world of technology.

As an agriculturist and a plant disease scientist, I understand the need to increase food production and how diseases can affect the availability of crops, yield, quality of produce and income for growers/farmers. Block chain in agriculture can help smallholder farmers to improve crop disease surveillance using remote field surveys. For example, in 2019 the international institute of tropical agriculture (IITA) partnered with RightMesh to design, develop and test a mobile app for plant disease detection in farming communities in Tanzania combing the power of block chain and mobile mesh networking. Others include SecureAgric, AgricKonnect, AgriPay, AgricKoin, AgriKard, AgriWallet e.t.c

Blockchain can Provide useful information for Growers

Information provided through block chain could help the grower/farmer to plan his growing season. For example, know what crop to grow, the best time of the year to grow the crop in relation to pest/ diseases and the particular crop in demand per season, because of the need of the crop for certain community groups in rural or urban markets.

Blockchain can assist in Connecting farmers to markets/expanding their market.

Farmers can benefit from the block chain technology because it helps the farmers to connect to international or local markets.

Blockchain can also Assist Farmers/Grower to increase the value of their community.

Through the block chain process, the farmer/grower is able to track, trace and maintain records so they are able to provide consumers with highly verified information of the produce they supply. This in turn enables the consumers to trust their brand/products and continue to patronize these growers.

Block chain can assist in increasing the value of a nation’s currency because of the high value product which attracts a premium price.

Blockchain can provide information that will help growers/producers create new market.

For example, markets to curb food wastage: producers can market healthy fruits which have little physical injury to consumers who need them yet, may not be able to pay premium for imperfect foods/fruits. Foods not consumed at big dinners or events can be channeled to be sold at reduced prices to people willing to pay for these foods, instead of trashing or burning them.

These action also help to achieve SDG goals 2 and 13.

Finally, in areas of Food deserts characterized by limited access to affordable and or healthy foods. Block Chain can help consumers make right decisions on healthy foods and connect them to stores that sell healthy/fresh foods.

The potential of technology and application of block chain in solving agricultural challenges cannot be over-emphasized. Investing and scaling up technologies that provide potential markets and sustainability is crucial for global and African Agricultural transformation.

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