Ethiopia-based Green Agro solutions promotes “one-stop farming solution” providing farm inputs and mechanisation service to 20,000+ smallholder farmers in the country's Arsi Zone.

ELDORET: Safaricom yesterday launched Connected Farmer, a mobile and web-based service that will help agricultural processing businesses in production planning by opening a communication line with farmers.

Connected Farmer enables organizations transact with farmers by using M-PESA to make and receive payments securely. It also helps  register and key in information such as  expected production quantities, helping processors plan especially on pick up and work force resulting in overall cost reduction in production.

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“Our aim is to digitize the end to end operations of agricultural produce processing firms creating supply chain efficiencies, linking farmers to commercial markets while facilitating productivity improvements,” said Rita Okuthe , Director of Enterprise Business at Safaricom.

Connected Farmer is a partnership between Safaricom and Mezzanine Ware – a company that specializes in developing mobile enabled solutions for businesses. The launch follows a six month pilot, which saw 12 firms with 80,000 farmers sign up. The technology also helps farmers in tracking sales and cash management.

“Before we implemented Connected Farmer, our dairy farmers did not have full visibility of the amount of milk sold. Having this recorded improves visibility on the amount of production sold which in turn, helps them manage their cash flows,” said Philip Kibusie, Chairman Sirikiwa Dairies

The Connected Farmer digital solution adds to the suite of services that Safaricom Business has launched recently. Other propositions that focus on SMEs include Fibre for Business, Easy Bundles and Ready Business.

The ‘Ready Business’ platform bundles together various technology and advisory services to empower entrepreneurs tackle challenges of a rapidly changing business landscape.

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