Agricultural Technology (Agric tech) startups are undoubtedly changing the face of agro investment in Nigeria. Just as food delivery services have made food purchase easier through mediums such as online shopping, agricultural investment has also been made easier thanks to Agric tech startups.
This is an appreciated improvement as agro investment was often overlooked because of its association with being difficult. However, after Nigeria slipped into a recession in 2016, the need to diversify the nation’s source of wealth became a subject of focus.
For those who were passionate about investing in the agricultural industry in Nigeria but didn’t know how to go around the schematics, agric tech startups have become the ultimately, easy alternative. Agro investment is gearing up to be as easy as online shopping because of the following areas of improvement in agric tech.
This is perhaps one of the best things agricultural innovation has to offer. The importance of convenience in a business cannot be overemphasized because where business is involved, the customer does what is most convenient for him/her. This is why some people would rather use voice control settings to navigate their phones instead of scrolling and typing.
The absence of convenience in a business can discourage potential partakers. This has plagued agro investment for so long but agric tech has changed that.
With the availability of online farming, agric tech startups such as yours truly, Farmcrowdy, have changed the face of agricultural investment in Nigeria. You want to invest in a farm and make profit without worrying about getting your hands dirty? It’s now as easy as clicking a button or downloading an app on your mobile device.
What happens when two parties need services from each other but don’t know how to get in contact with each other? A third party serves as a bridge to bring them together. If a company is looking to hire and wants to get across to the most qualified candidates, there are third party services which connect the company directly to these candidates.
Similarly, agric tech startups have served as a bridge to bring two parties together to foster agro investment.There are some farmers looking for funds to farm and there are potential investors looking for farms to sponsor. How do these two parties get across to each other for agro investment? Three words, Agricultural Technology Startups.
Farmcrowdy has drastically transformed agro investment by serving as this bridge. Similarly, other agric tech startups are providing services along various parts of the agric value chain, such as HelloTractor which serves to connect farmers in need of a tractor with people looking to rent out their tractors. Also, after successful farming and harvesting, there are agric tech startups which connect farmers with people in need of their produce.
Agric tech startups are fast closing the gap between the parties involved in agro investment.
3. Measuring & Predicting Production Risk:
A farmer’s efforts during planting season can be ruined due to extreme weather. The inability to predict the outcome of an investment was a stumbling block to agro investment but not anymore.
Agric tech startups have adopted modern technology to mitigate production risk in agricultural investment. Startups such as Probityfarms.com allows farmers to obtain location specific weather updates and how weather conditions can impact their farming.
Farmers can now obtain information needed to predict and manage farm activities to avoid product failure and enhance food production.
4. Data and Research:
Data is crucial in every business and agricultural business is no exception. There was a time when it was difficult to collate data for investment but now, agric tech startups such as Verdant Agric tech have devised a solution.
They provide market information to make small-scale farmers more visible to other key players in agro investment.
Similarly, Agrodata, uses technology to obtain and provide usable agricultural information from spatial data and agricultural research information. Agric tech startups also have websites and blog posts which make information regarding agro investment easier to access. This has paved way for a more efficient method of getting access to data regarding the Nigerian Agricultural sector.
5. Agric Tech Training:
Agricultural Technology encompasses two things and to succeed in it, you need to have a good grasp of both. Farmers have a good grasp of the agricultural aspect but business could still be slacking if they do not have a good enough grasp of the technological aspect.
Luckily, startups such as Farmcrowdy make it a priority to train farmers on modern farming techniques to keep up to date with innovative technology. This improves the farm manager’s outcome and ultimately leads to development in Nigeria.
6. Funding and Insurance:
Before agric tech startups came into place, some farmers found it difficult to obtain loans and grants from banks to grow or scale their businesses. But now, these startups help avoid such situations by creating a secured platform for sponsors to support local farmers. They also provide insurance to sponsors to avoid suffering losses during the business.
As Bill Gates put it, “Ultimately, it’s the way human beings with our vast storage of ingenuity, deploy the power of technology and tools that makes the biggest difference.” Agric tech startups have the potential to grow more food and increase all round productivity in the world which is why they (we) will keep looking for innovative ways to make agro investment easier.
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