Empowering Farmers with Blockchain Technology

By CIOReview | Monday, February 25, 2019

Growing our own food by agriculture has provided humankind leisure to pursue science and arts. Technological advancements can help farmers increase their crop productivity and reap profits. Although small farmers produce 80 percent of food in developing countries, they face problems like lack of resources, unpredictable climate, soil and market trends. Farmers rarely have access to insurance or essential financial services, which end up in the pockets of intermediaries.

The blockchain is based on DLT (Distributed Ledger Technology). This ledger contains all types of data in the form of records, transaction details and information in blocks. The data stored in these blocks is tamper-proof and hold incorruptible trust. Blockchain can be used to put anything of value from gold, intellectual property, and even potatoes. These features provide a secure platform for farmers, consumers, retailers to register and share information with maximum safety, transparency and speed. The data entered is visible to all of the elements in the blockchain, and everyone has the freedom to approve or reject the information. Once the data is validated, it gets recorded into blocks, which cannot be altered by anyone.

Blockchain technology provides a secure way to perform transactions among untrustworthy parties. Blockchain technology can help governments in providing small farmers with finance, insurance and facilitate other crucial transactions directly without any intermediaries.

With blockchain technology, farmers can get authenticated information about the entire cycle of agricultural events and also instant data related to the seed quality, soil moisture, climate & environment related data, payments, demand and sale price, and other crucial related data all at one platform. Companies that buy or invest in agricultural products will need information about the product. This information can include everything from salt and sugar levels in vegetables which would affect flavor, crop health information, which can help banks predict whether a farm will be able to repay a loan.

Blockchain will help in establishing a secure direct link between farmers and consumers, with blockchain’s transparency in the supply chain, farmers will get the real price for their produce. This bridges the gap and helps farmers organize themselves to reach the market without intermediaries.

Blockchain technology can ensure efficient supply of products, fair pricing, and improved product tracking. Apart from real-time management of the stock, all the information starting from seed procurement to harvest at the POS system can be recorded. This will help producers and consumers in quantifying, monitoring, and controlling the risks throughout the agriculture process.

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