Tech-driven farmer producer companies (FPCs) are a vital necessity for smallholder farmers today. Tech solutions can be extremely beneficial for FPCs in helping small farmers find new ways to increase yields and maximise production. Tech-driven FPCs and farmer collectives can optimise data management, control inputs, and provide AI-based advisory services to smallholders. These factors can strengthen the capabilities of small farmers and elevate their bargaining power.
As per the Press Information Bureau, India has more than 86% small and marginal farmers. In order to produce good quality commodities and get the right price for their crops, these farmers need access to improved technologies and better market opportunities. Tech-driven FPCs can propel growth for the smallholders by enhancing their market linkages and ensuring impressive economic progress.
Tech-driven FPCs are empowered with smart systems that enable them to have better control over their administrative functions. This also helps them to intelligently manage procurements so as to ensure seamless flow of inputs and high production efficiency for each of their farmer members. The digitalisation of FPCs also enables smallholders to proactively tackle the concerns of climate change and maintain desired agricultural productivity in all situations. With tech-driven FPCs, smallholders are also not subjected to exploitative intermediation, which considerably bolsters their bargaining power.
Check out the following factors that determine how tech-driven FPCs and farmer collectives are playing a crucial role in uplifting the socio-economic status of smallholder farmers.
Mastering Farmer Data Management With Cutting-edge ERP Platform
With the lack of sufficient tech expertise, FPCs are deprived of digitalisation in their farmer data management practices. The reliance on manual procedures not only slows down the processes but also introduces the possibility of errors and discrepancies in data management. This adversely impacts the administration efforts of FPCs and brings unnecessary interruptions in their operations.
FPOs and FPCs are in dire need to design effective frameworks in order to streamline their farmer member data management systems. ERP solutions can help farmer collectives and producer companies to achieve this objective. Tech-driven FPCs can accelerate their farmer registration as well as data updation tasks while also ensuring accuracy.
ERP software solutions can enable farmer collectives and FPCs to record data related to farmer registrations, member profiles, etc on a regular basis. These records can be quite useful to the farmer collectives in making well-informed decisions pertaining to operational planning, procurements, finance, etc. The smart decisions ultimately can augur well for the smallholders and contribute to their agricultural activities.
Controlling Input Supply Chains With Digitalised Frameworks
One of the primary objectives of smallholder farmers is to reduce the cost of production for their farms. This makes it imperative for the small farmers to have a well-defined system to manage inputs and optimise procurements. Integration of technology solutions can help FPCs and farmer collectives in streamlining input management and uplifting the production capacity.
Tech-driven FPCs can be helpful in making informed decisions associated with the provision of inputs to farmer members. This can significantly enhance production efficiency through judicious use of all the farm resources and thus, drive profitability for smallholders by ensuring cost-effectiveness.
Well-organised input management is essential for smallholders as they cannot afford any wastage or losses in their farms due to inefficient production practices. With a digitalised input management framework, FPCs can empower farmers to plan their farm operations much earlier and in a better manner. This not only saves time but also mitigates any risks involved with farming decisions.
Strengthening the Bargaining Power of Smallholder Farmers
Small farmers generally find it difficult to capture appropriate value for their crop produce. This is primarily due to middlemen and limited access to market opportunities which results in poor bargaining power. As a result, smallholder farmers receive low and unstable incomes, which affects their livelihoods. However, this stance can be improved with the help of technology solutions.
Tech-driven FPCs have an important role to play in enhancing the bargaining powers of smallholder farmers by enabling them with clarity on market dynamics. Farmers need accurate information about prices during trading times so that they know when it’s appropriate time to sell their produce at the right price point without incurring any loss. Tech tools like AI-powered advisory services can be helpful in delivering such insights accurately.
Digitalisation can make farming a lot more remunerative for smallholder farmers. By training and encouraging marginalised farmers to incorporate technology-based solutions, FPCs can boost the bargaining power of smallholders. With tech-driven FPCs, small farmers can access better market opportunities and compete globally to the best of their abilities.
Encouraging Climate-smart Farming through AI and ML-based Advisory
One of the biggest concerns of small farmers is their poor adaptation capacity to climate change. This is because smallholders do not possess the requisite proficiency and expertise to carry out climate-smart agriculture activities. Consequently, extreme weather events such as floods and droughts severely affect the productivity of their farm operations and adversely impact the quality of crop outcomes.
Although it is impossible to avert erratic weather conditions, their effects can be managed by taking precautionary measures. Advanced advisory systems can act as powerful mechanisms for climate-resilient agricultural planning and management, which is indispensable for smallholders. With AI and ML-based climate-smart advisory systems, FPCs can help smallholders to better assess and mitigate climate risks.
The use of sensors and weather stations can be beneficial in predicting temperature changes or projecting rainfall patterns. Based on these estimates, tech-driven FPCs can assist smallholders in devising effective strategies to practice climate-resilient agriculture. AI and ML-based climate-smart advisory can thus be extremely helpful to smallholders in tackling catastrophic weather events and minimising consequent economic losses.
Tech-driven FPCs are a blessing for small farmers. These farmer collectives play a significant role in powering the potential of smallholders with future-ready software and digital solutions. Check out FarmERP’s Farmer Producer Company pack that helps FPCs and FPOs in organising their operations by delivering top-notch technological and managerial expertise. Get in touch with us to know more about how you can build successful business frameworks for your agricultural institution and ensure success for small farmers.