Farming Data

Using mobile technology to amplify the voices of smallholder farmers

Establishing a digital environment to give farmers autonomy. Empowering farmers by facilitating communication and collaboration.

Use Case

A smallholder farmer has a small excess of their crop in a season. Small markets with a low demand do not pay a reasonable price, while larger markets demand a large, regular supply, far beyond their capacity. Our concept at Farming Data is to create a digital community of local farmers and markets, empowering smallholders with the knowledge necessary to sell at the best price, whenever they can. They can even partner with others to fulfill the necessary quota and sell to previously inaccessible markets. In our App, the digital collective can organise effective, demand-oriented production, transportation to markets and sales. We therefore bypass middlemen and implement a digital direct supply chain. At anytime, App-Users can rate other users, thus building a self-regulating community.

Potential

By farming big data, we are harvesting the material to build a digital infrastructure that refines existing food supply chains. On the micro level, in order to harmonise the interface between disempowered farmers and markets, we are creating a digital food system that bypasses current market entry barriers and forms In-App communities to work together. At the macro level, we are collating regional data from individual farming households that directly report emerging problems on the ground. Our analysis of App usage metadata will enable a new level of evidence-driven policy making. This will revolutionise the current approach of governments, NGOs and private companies who are often either disconnected from what's happening on the ground or use laborious and time-consuming survey approaches.

Business Case

The unique value of our social enterprise lies in a free platform using mobile technology that bridges the flow of information to and from smallholder farmers. The result of this is to enable local, user-specific solutions by collecting high resolution user data. Our venture will rely on fundraising at first, after which we will generate revenue in three ways. For businesses, governments and other organisations, we can act as consultants to analyse data, accurately define relevant issues and identify unexplored opportunities. Commercial use of our analysed data and trends will be sold under a different licence. Lastly, farming App users who consistently make long-term significant sales will incur a small service charge that will kickstart other initial users of this digital community.

Objectives:

  1. Develop a platform to enable communication and transmit information to smallholder farmers allowing them to transcend knowledge gaps
  2. Facilitate collaboration so smallholder farmers can, together, increase their negotiating power and integrate into more networks
  3. Collate real-time data on the problems encountered by farmers in different regions so policies can be better targeted

Team Farming Data

Cambridge, United Kingdom

Our Team

  • Marcel Meyer U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • David Godding U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Jacquelyne Poon U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Our Mission

We aim to form digital food supply communities to share effective knowledge management. Too many issues encountered by smallholder farmers are rooted in a lack of information. Our mission is to provide the platform to close these knowledge gaps and thereby directly connect local, regional and international stakeholders, which can enable appropriate deployment of both bottom-up and top-down solutions.

Our Background

We are a group of three PhD students and we believe that food security is one of the most significant global issues. We are passionate about providing solutions from the bottom-up to empower smallholder farmers and simultaneously addressing the need for a more robust and diversified food production system. (Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/40265046@N02/14834411912/ Cilia Schubert via Compfight https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/)

Our Team

  • Marcel Meyer U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • David Godding U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Jacquelyne Poon U of Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Our Mission

We aim to form digital food supply communities to share effective knowledge management. Too many issues encountered by smallholder farmers are rooted in a lack of information. Our ...Read More

Our Background

We are a group of three PhD students and we believe that food security is one of the most significant global issues. We are passionate about providing solutions ...Read More

The information contained here represents student project ideas developed as the result of brainstorming activities during Round 1 of the TFF Challenge. It does not represent any final business plans or commercial products.